What’s up, Guys? During one of the LCA calls, Mr. Mumford once said, “How you do one thing is how you do everything,” and I never forgot it. I even quote it often. When there’s a part of my life that is lacking and slacking, this pops up in my spirit.
This takes a bit of self evaluation to truly get the essence but when you do, I must admit that it can be a bit overwhelming, to say the least. I can definitely point out areas in my life where I made drastic changes for the better but I can also point out areas where I lost territory. I know some people will read this and write it off as malarky but those who strive for excellence, will feel where I’m coming from.
There’s always been a couple of phrases that I’ve been longing to hear come from someone’s lips, but there’s none more important than hear the Lord say “Well, done thy good and faithful servant.” Have I lived up to those standards? Have I been good? Have I been faithful? Have I served anyone other than myself? Without complaining? Lately, I haven’t. (I don’t like to beat around the bush.) I used to be though and I was wondering last night as I drove home from work, When did stop? When did I stop picking up the trash in my neighborhood? When did I stop volunteering to take someone home? When did my love turn in eye rolls and long sighs? When did I start ducking so that I wouldn’t have to speak or automatically extending a helping hand to a friend I knew that was in trouble? When did I start preferring that no one came to my house? The truth to all of those answers is that I didn’t know. Some things I did know. I knew that I stopped inviting people because I was tired to hearing excuses about how it was so far. I stopped picking up the trash because there seemed like there was more and more scattered. After all, it wasn’t mine. I wanted to follow the rules and I didn’t want to be inconvenienced when I didn’t offer to take the kids home. I didn’t want the responsibility of transporting someone’s kid when their parents didn’t show. My love turned into eye rolls every time I’m someone’s therapist but they can’t make the time to even ask about my day.
Should I feel justified? No, I feel like my love is lacking. Since when did love rely on the responsibilities, responses or reactions from anyone else? Love just loves.
Definition of Love
- 1a(1) : strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties <maternal love for a child> (2) : attraction based on sexual desire : affection and tenderness felt by lovers <After all these years, they are still very much in love.> (3) : affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests <love for his old schoolmates>b : an assurance of affection <give her my love>
- 2: warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion <love of the sea>
- 3a: the object of attachment, devotion, or admiration <baseball was his first love>b (1) : a beloved person : darling —often used as a term of endearment (2) British —used as an informal term of address
- 4a: unselfish loyal and benevolent (see benevolent 1a) concern for the good of another: such as (1) : the fatherly concern of God for humankind (2) : brotherly concern for others b : a person’s adoration of God
a feeling of strong or constant regard for and dedication to someone; a person with whom one is in love; positive regard for something; a brief romantic relationship; to hold dear; to feel passion, devotion, or tenderness for; to take pleasure in; to touch or handle in a tender or loving manner (Merriam-Webster)
Definition of Benevolent
1a: marked by or disposed to doing good <a benevolent donor>b : organized for the purpose of doing good <a benevolent society>2: marked by or suggestive of goodwill <benevolent smiles> (Merriam-Webster)
You know I have to go here…
1 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. (1 Corinthians 13, NIV)
Lately, I’ve been slacking in the love area. There are obviously people I love. I love you guys because I appreciate that we share experiences so it’s not that I hate people but what I’m looking at is when inconvenienced what is my reaction? What’s my reaction when folk take advantage of me? Am I quick to cuss someone out? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that it’s okay to be a doormat but at the same time we are called to love. The Bible says that people will know us by our love and I feel like more and more people question the church and their love. I’m am apart of the church so I feel like it’s my, as well as others who claim to be the church, obligation to look at our shortcomings. So my prayer for the Lord has been to give me a revelation of love, not romantic love but His kind of love. I need help in loving others.
It really has nothing to do with being a nice person. It’s more about my attitude. Have you ever been in this predicament? How did you recover? Let me know in the comments.