Love is kind

I just had a really cool experience – a friend noticed that the tires on my car looked low, like they needed some air. Now the deal is that I can be semi-car savy. However, lately I haven’t had very much time to be mindful of car maintainence. Furthermore, we are leaving Thurs to go to Cambodia & getting to do some AMAZING work with Saving Moses & nightcare. So when my friend said he would help w the air pressure thing, I was blown away – totally. As he was saying that he would help me, I felt the Holy Spirit remind me that love is kind & this is a very tangible expression of genuine love. I became stunned to recognize that God was immediately expressing love to me through the kind & practical help with the air pressure in my tires.
This is all to say that the many big & small expressions of kindness to & through us throughout any given day could be dry meaningful expressions of God’s love to & through us, if we’ll keep our eyes & ears dialed into God’s voice, hand & ways. Be mindful that God genuinely loves you ūüėÄ

ever feel impatient?

¬†Recently, I’ve been somewhat frustrated with one of my friends because they’ve made some very silly decisions that have had some fairly negative consequences. ¬†I find myself being impatient with my friend & wanting them to change. ¬†I’m trying to watch the words that I say to my friend, so that I don’t hurt their feelings due to my impatience. ¬†So far, here’s my impatience insights:

  • if impatience is left unchecked, it can be very destructive
  • impatience isn’t only related to our words, but it also can affect our attitudes & actions, so that even if we don’t say anything, we must still remain vigilant against even its subtle expression
  • sometimes it helps to talk about how we feel, but its important to be responsible for our own feelings & not give someone else control of how we may feel or act
  • sometimes the best antidote to impatience is a slow, intentional & methodical application of patience
  • James 1:4 – let patience have her perfect work so that you may be mature & complete. ¬†Give patience permission to work in your life ūüôā

things that help relationships to grow

¬† Over the last few weeks,¬†I have had some interesting conversations with various friends about different ways to improve relationships ¬†One such way is by doing things together – so today, my husband & I are going to buy a dishwasher. ¬†Of course we have different ways of approaching this project, but the point is that we work together to get something that will be reliable & helpful to our family for a reasonable price. ¬†I’ll keep you posted on how this adventure turns out ,)

Some other ways to help a relationship grow include:

  • trust: ¬†not only do we want to be able to trust the other person, but we, ourselves, must also be trustworthy
  • forgiveness – the deeper the friendship, the greater the quantity & deeper the quality of forgiveness; ¬†shallow friendships can often reflect limited forgiveness
  • time: ¬†listening, doing things together and other things / ways that require time
  • sacrifice: ¬†preferring the other person’s desires & needs over our own is a good way to not only grow a relationship, but to also grow as an individual
  • communication: ¬†honesty & diversity (through lots of different ways – written, non-verbal, dialogues, to name a few ideas)
  • affirmation: ¬†looking for creative ways to say, “you is kind, you is wise & you is important” is always important to grow relationships
  • common purpose: ¬†it’s important to understand that different relationships have different purposes (friendships can be for a reason, a season but only a few are for a lifetime)

Ultimately, I see my relationships as a means to express genuine love Рletting God love through me.  This is the goal in which I want to always be improving.

what’s the opposite of love???

¬†I’ve been thinking about love & its various expressions as they relate to different relationships (kids, parents, mates, friends, etc).¬† In my thinking, I’ve also been considering not only what love is, but also what love is not & here are some take aways I’ve been considering.¬† Love is not:

  • selfish – hence my tweet from a few days ago about love making decisions in the best interests of the recipient & not merely the giver of love
  • inconsistent – love is stable & as such, doesn’t merely function in the realm of feelings
  • hateful, malicious, evil, cruel or sadistic
  • apathetic – this word comes from the greek meaning to lack feeling or passion (a-pathy).¬† Perhaps indifference is more deadly than guns, bombs¬† & knives
  • egocentric or prideful – maybe these would be¬†synonyms with¬†selfish

These are some interesting observations, but what is more important than observation is application.  I know that I want to love well & authentically, but I get frustrated with myself because I fail.  It is exactly these frustrations, among other things, that cause me to turn to God because God is love.  I turn to God to live in a deeper relationship with Him so that He can love others more authentically through me.

think twice & be nice

Here are some interesting observations:

  • i was flying somewhere & observed some person get really upset w a flight attendant & chew out the attendant.
  • i was at starbux & saw a person blow off the barista making their beverage

In both of these instances, i was perplexed.  Why would you take out the frustrations of your day on the person responsible for your safety & well being while flying on an airplane?  What good would be accomplished by making a flight attendant angry w you?  Furthermore, why would you dismiss or ignore the person making a drink that you will be consuming? 

Why do we let out or frustrations on someone who is serving us?¬† Even if they get something wrong or make a mistake, why wouldn’t we extend some of the abundant grace that we’ve received?¬† Aside from what Jesus tells us to be kind & loving, its just good common sense to think twice & be nice, even if you’re feeling a bit stressed out. ūüôā