There was a time in my life where I hit a low point. Although today I am bursting at the seams with a joy that can only come from Christ that wasn’t always the case. In my not too distance past I was miserable, depressed and hurting. I was also a professional at hiding my pain and masking my misery. However, my sister always sees right through me and her ability to see my suffering led to one of my favorite stories to share.
One day as I was going back to my dorm from class at OU I opened up my door to see my roommate sitting in the dark. I was slightly perplexed, but before I could even muster out a question my niece (featured in videos below) popped out from underneath my covers and my sisters jumped out from their hiding spots as well. SURPRISE! A surprise it was indeed. I can’t remember if I cried, but I’m pretty sure I made some sort of loud, distorted noise because people in my dorm came running down to see what the commotion was all about. My family had made the drive from Dallas to OU to be there for me during a tough time in my life. That day we went to the mall and to this day I still have this now almost completely faded picture hanging on my visor in my car. It reminds me of one of the best days of my life. It was one of the happiest moments I’ve experienced before accepting Christ’s love. The day love showed up to comfort and support me. Love makes you laugh. Love holds you while you cry. Love listens when you need to talk. Love makes the drive. Love drops everything and goes the distance. Love rises to the call. Love shows up. Love engages. Love never fails.
I think of another day that was more recent. I hadn’t really had a “bad” day in over a year and, well, I guess I finally had my long, overdue bad day. It’s one of those days where someone who says the wrong thing can just set you over the edge. You just snap. You become tired of all the negativity and complaining that surrounds you. It’s one of those days where everything that can go wrong will go wrong on the one day you can’t handle it. In times like these I’ve found it useful to remove myself from whatever situation is stressing me. I got a knock on my door a little after five. Not many people know where I live so I thought it was the boy scout I bought popcorn from a while back. Much to my surprise one of my coworkers was standing at my door with a bottle of wine and a card with a short but sweet note inside. I’ll never forget that moment. It wasn’t a text asking me if I were okay. It wasn’t a phone call making sure I was okay. And for the record, those are all good things. But in this instance love showed up. Love brought wine too which is definitely an added bonus. Love goes out of its way to be present. There’s power in presence.
Love is a verb. Love is taking action when God stirs your heart. A lazy love lets life pass by. The more we love the more we live like it’s our last day.The more we love the more we live like it's our last day. Click To Tweet
Romans 12:9 “Love must be sincere.” My actions should be a result of the genuine love that overflows out of my heart and not out of obligation. Obligation love is a dangerous love to be in. Love is a choice we make. Love must be sincere. I have more to say on this topic, but I will keep this blog post bite-sized instead of buffet-sized.
Mark 12:30-31 “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’There is no commandment greater than these.”
Wow. No commandment greater than those. It’s that simple. In a literal sense would your neighbor know you loved them if you just sat in your house and said “I love my neighbor?” Nope. Someone only knows you love them when your words are supported through your actions. I can say I love my neighbor, but next time I see them bringing in groceries maybe it would be a good idea to give them a hand. Today I was struggling to carry a desk up my stairs with my roommate. My neighbor offered to lend me a hand and help me carry the desk up to our apartment. It immediately reminded me of the verse to love your neighbor as yourself. Maybe to him it was a little act, but to us girls it was a big deal. I would probably still be stuck on the stairs with a heavy desk if it weren’t for the kindness of my neighbor.
“God so LOVED the world that he GAVE.” The root of love is not what we think or say to provide for others, but how much we GIVE of ourselves. Take the time to leave your legacy of limitless love today. Your love might be the only love someone receives today, this month or even their entire life.
Love by making yourself available to be used by God. Express love in a little way and it will go a long way.