One of the most important questions you can ask your spouse or your child is, “Do you feel loved?”
Feelings come and go.
Love is not a feeling.
Love is a decision.
Love is not given for good behavior.
Love is not withheld as punishment.
Love is given whether or not it is deserved.
You know you truly love someone when the act of loving that person is more important to you than how that person makes you feel.
Do you want to live a real love story? Select a mate that knows how to love you beyond their self. And pick someone you are willing to love for a lifetime, no matter what. And when you have children, share that same kind of unconditional and secure love with them.
If real love sounds hard, look at Jesus Christ. He loved us so much that he willingly gave his life and died for us – even for those that did not believe in him, that betrayed him, and that spit on him. He gave his life for the undeserved because he loved them even though they gave him nothing in return. Jesus’ love is perfect love.
Some people say they would die for their spouse or for their child, but yet they live every day selfishly for themselves. How do you compare?
“Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary, wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala.” (Jn 19:25)
As a mother, I cannot possibly fathom how Mary managed herself during the tragic days when they arrested and crucified her Son. She stood on the road and watched her precious Jesus pass by struggling to carry the burden of his cross. When all his disciples fled, she remained with him. I think no one could rip her away. She was completely helpless to do anything for him. Even more, she knew she had to support him to accept the suffering to come. All the while knowing that he did nothing to deserve such punishment. He was perfect and pure in every way. While she watched her Son die, she did the only thing she could do, offer her love while he suffered. Stand by and watch in hopes her presence might offer some comfort to her precious child. What an incredible amount of faith Jesus’ suffering and death had to demand of Mary. When he died, they took him down from the cross and placed him in her arms. She held him and looked at him. I am sure through her tears she thought of her precious baby boy from long ago. Probably never wanting to let his body go. Her Son displayed perfect faith. Her Son died to save the world. Oh how she must have had an overwhelming mix of emotions. Debilitating grief, proud of his courage, proud of his faith, angry at those who killed him and anxiously putting all of her hope in His resurrection so that she too might survive another day.
My 10-yr old son recently had hernia repair surgery. Upon arrival at the hospital, the pre-op nurse began asking me a series of medical history questions about my son. She rattled off a very long list of illnesses and health conditions. Asthma? No. Cancer? No. Lung conditions? No. Neurological issues? No. Heart conditions? No. Diabetes, blood pressure, head injuries….? No. No. No. The list was painfully long. Tears came to my eyes. I began to think of all the families that answer “Yes” for their children and loved ones. And I thought to myself, “Dear God, thank you for this blessed life of ours. Please Lord, please, hold up those that are tasked with managing pain or illness in their lives.”
As much as I had succumbed to “mommy worry” for my son, his issue was minor in the scheme of things. He came home the same day. He will be back to flipping in the gym and competing within 6 weeks. With an overwhelming heart of gratitude, I will not take our good health for granted. I will rejoice in our Lord and say “Thank you.”
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again, I will say, Rejoice. Let all know your forebearance. The Lord is at hand. Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be known to God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, do; and the God of peace will be with you.”
“Motherhood is glamorous”, said no mother ever! With three kids, a dog, a cat and a man-child for a husband, my house is less than perfectly clean most days. Ok, let’s get real, we’ve got kites strung out in one corner, leftover valentine’s day celebrations scattered on the dining room table, a pile of lite sabers, toy guns, hulk punching gloves, mustache duct tape and a 3′ stuffed tweety bird stacked in another corner. And since these piles of treasures made it to the corners of the room rather than the middle of the room…. That’s pretty darn clean.
This morning, with a yawn and one eye still half asleep, I scratched my messy hair and sought the refuge of a warm shower. I was greeted by an army of rubber ducks.
After I did a double take and a silent head shake, I left the audience of ducks undisturbed. I had to tell myself that they couldn’t actually see me! Later, I would visit my “royal throne room” and would ponder what my kids were thinking, saying and doing as they aligned those mighty ducks. I love my children. And I love how they see the world. They create joy even around rubber ducks. I eventually started talking to the ducks. I think I might name them.
My house ain’t clean most days. But it is full of life every day and for that I am thankful. And that is the glamorous life of motherhood!
I encourage all the moms that are working hard to clean up here and there, to slow down and see the world through your child’s eyes. See the joy in the little things. Share the joy by leaving a post here…. What do you see?
Mark 10:14-15–“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”