Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Loving Without Needing Affirmation, Affection, or Appreciation

My current prayer request for myself it that I would learn what it means to love sacrificially with God's love.

I'm learning that love that expects something in return isn't really love.

I'm learning that love that manipulates, flatters, is needy, is self-serving, is self-focused, is easy, and is even rewarding isn't really love.

If it's all about me, I don't think I'm loving well.

Where is this hitting me hardest? Parenting! I want to love well without needing affirmation, affection, or appreciation. Can you imagine how that would be to live in a home where you were just loved with no strings attached? Can you imagine?

I find myself standing in my kitchen wanting all sorts of affirmation and appreciation from people that I'm working so hard to love. Is that love? Is it?

When I'm set free to love as God loves--from a pure, joyful, overflowing, spirit-filled space within me--it doesn't matter one bit what I get from you. I'm going to love, love, love no matter what.

It feels so free and right to love this way.

I'm finding more and more freedom in Jesus every day.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Imaginary Battles

Some family members suffer from seasonal allergies, and in this season, those allergens come on particularly strong.

Allergies! When we think about the body's response to what seems like an enemy attack--but in fact is not-the whole thing frustrates us. 

All day, I think about imaginary battles that waste energy and cause suffering. 

Some things aren't worth fighting about because we're giving them a weight and a meaning they don't deserve. 

There's no real threat here. God has won. 

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Stop Comparing and Make Your Own Fun

Sometimes we get into a terrible thought pattern where we truly believe everyone else is having much more fun than we are. We just can't handle all the wonderful things we see others experiencing while we go about our hum-drum, boring Sunday.

We're driving away after dropping one daughter off at a fabulous party, and the other daughter sulks in the back seat of the car. Why doesn't she get those kinds of invitations? What about her day? Why isn't she having any fun?

Because I continue to mediate on Ephesians 2:6 and our special seat in the heavenly realms in Christ, I can say with confidence, "God has a perfect day planned for you that is entirely separate from--but not better or worse than--your sister's or anyone else's. God has good works prepared in advance for you to do today. God has blessings for you in store today. It might not be a party, but it will be something."

Can we believe it?

She sulks for a while longer but then something clicks inside of her. She announces, "I am going to make chocolate cupcakes from scratch from my own recipe." It's like the dark mood lifts and she's in a different spiritual place.

That's it, girl! There's a great day ahead that's your day.

Later, I ask her what advice she would give to other little girls who are having sad, empty days. She says, "Go bake. Make your own fun."