Over the past 30 days I’ve been participating with over 700 other bloggers to post about one topic over the entire month. I admit that when I began I wasn’t really set on my topic: Loving Your Family. I should have been broader…or maybe more specific. I’m not sure. I’d do it differently though. And, actually, it’s quite hard to do. I did miss a few days which I intended to make up for…but, well, that’s not going to happen. Through it all, I’ve been loving my family through a series of small crises. In our house, there’s always drama. But this month has been fraught with more than I’d care to share. For the most part, I’ve kept my family out of this conversation. Mostly because teenagers don’t much appreciate their dirty laundry being aired for all the world to read.(And can I blame them?) But now that we are to the end of this topic, I’d like to talk to myself. If you want to listen in, that’s fine. But this is for me.
I’ve always thought that I understood love. REAL love. Maybe I’m naive or maybe I’m just not thinking hard enough about it, but love is tough. It’s not romantic and calm. It doesn’t fit the mold that I thought it would. Love takes work. Lots of work. Love takes sacrifice~ more than I even know at this point in my life. Love hurts. And love rewards.
Yesterday, I watched a video. I knew the story behind it years ago but I had avoided watching the video knowing it would reduce me to a puddle of mush. It did. I was sobbing. Tears flowed. I could not contain the swelling of my heart. Love broke the mold.
Are you crying yet? I can’t stop. It’s unconditional love. The kind of love that gets up early in the morning when all you want to do is sleep. Love that gently rocks a baby back to sleep for the 10th time this night. A love that holds the forehead of not one child, but 4 all through the night as they fight a stomach flu so that their dad can sleep and be okay for work in the morning.
Love hurts your muscles; carrying a too-tall child up the stairs to their bed because they have fallen asleep on the couch.
Love hurts your heart; watching your daughter’s heart be broken for the first time because she’s not ready to give her heart away.
Love hurts your time; you cannot watch that TV show or read that book tonight because someone needs help with their homework.
Love hurts your wallet~ yes. It does.
What are you willing to lay down for love? If you say you love unconditionally and are willing to sacrifice then what will you lay down?
Are you patient with your kids and your spouse? Are you kind? Do you envy them or their position? Are you too proud to sit at their volleyball game for 3 hours and cheer even though your daughter isn’t likely to play more than 3 minutes? Do you dishonor them by talking about the dumb thing they did last week to your friends? Are you short-tempered and do you tend to bring up their past mistakes just to rub it in?
1 Corinthians 13(also known as the Love chapter) says this:
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.
LOVE NEVER FAILS. EVER. You keep going even when you want to quit. You hug when you want to walk away. You show grace and mercy when all you want to do is punish. LOVE NEVER FAILS.
Failing to love your family is not an option. It doesn’t mean you’re perfect~ it just means you’ll get back up and try again.