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Posts Tagged ‘Unconditional Love Rules’

desserts2cSometimes I can’t love ’em right
though my heart is full of love
not a taking love
just a giving love

a love bursting
and here I am
wanting to love ’em right
and I can’t
sometimes
no matter how hard I try
no matter the intent

“Love suffers long and is kind” (I Cor 13: 4)

I’ve baked celebration cakes
taken dinners
written poems
asked questions
encouraged
prayed psalms
sometimes even hugs
can’t love ’em right

“love is never envious or arrogant with pride. Nor is she conceited” ( 1 Cor 13:4)

whether it’s with a teen in a stage
a church family member
a kid’s mom my kid wants to play with
a random person
someone who belongs to you
through biology
or belongs to you ’cause
Jesus said so

” [Love]does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered,
it keeps no record of wrongs” (1 Cor 13:5)

sometimes I can’t love ’em right
and all the love languages in the world
can’t break
the language barrier
but God knows
who He gave me to love

“[Love} finds no pleasure in injustice done to others, but joyfully sides with the
truth
” (1 Cor 13:6)

sometimes when I can’t love ’em right
it’s for a reason
He knows
the pain of unrequited love
that God’s true love
isn’t inactive in the waiting
doesn’t stop existing
though it lives unseen
uncovered
over-looked
not sought-out
like a wrapped gift
given and unopened

“Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through
every circumstance”
(1 Cor 13:7)

He knows
that sometimes it feels like
I can’t love ’em right
but God’s kind of love never fails (1 Cor 13:8)

IMG_7514

Father’s Day weekend was filled with a few moments where I managed to love some of ’em right – not all of them, but some of them. One son wanted muffalettas for his birthday, chocolate celebration cake for another birthday boy, and creme brulee for my husband- and, well, it was just a sweet easy day. No – sometimes, I can’t love ’em right – not the way they want, maybe not even always the way they truly need, or in a way I know how to love.

I am not omniscient – though my boys at times thought I was

I only know what knowledge I have reached for and grasped – or what God has revealed

“but love makes up for all wrongs, trangressions, offenses, sins” (Proverbs 10:12)

The more I learn about God’s kind of love, the less judgemental, the less exclusive I become – the more I realize how imperfect I do love

and because I realize how imperfectly I love –

the greater the determintaion not to give up trying

and forgiving,

not just others but myself

learning

there is not always an immediate return

maybe not ever

on love

The only thing I can do is love my best

hands-on or hands-off

through prayer, creme brulee or muffaletta’s and oreo icing, hugs, talks, time or a filled-up gas tank

or maybe a no to gas-tank fill-ups, groundings and lectures

the only thing I can do is love my best

even if they think I don’t love ’em right.

meringuefruit

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A few years ago, my mother’s heart was stretched, torn and worn in a teen challenge. Teen Challenges are a journey, both to the teen and the parent, a faith journey, an unconditional love journey. I created 27 Unconditional Love Rules during that journey to help keep me loving, believing, speaking faith and hope.  For the last few months, I’ve wanted to whittle those 27 Unconditional Love Rules into a leaner, stronger presentation to encourage other mothers facing Teen Challenges to not give up hope in God’s plan for their teen’s life, to walk and talk faith when there is no evidence to support that faith, and to love unconditionally when no merit for it exists.

Introduction

Unconditional Love, True Love, lives in a real world, with real challenges and other real emotions. It is incredibly beautiful Unconditional Love. But it takes lots of strength, courage and faith. A little humbleness, too. A little taking the back seat sometimes and a lot of never giving up! Unconditional Love is all encompassing. It loves your husband, your children, your friends, God – even strangers. I would not want to live without it.

Even when someone does something expressly against your wishes, like dump the chicken noodle soup down the side of the sink without the garbage disposal, does not wear their seat belt when driving without you, or gets a tattoo, Unconditional Love loves.

Unconditional Love sees your child (whether little, teen or grown), spouse or parent through God’s Eyes.

If you cannot see it now – ask Him!

He will show you through His Eyes!

It is life changing!

Changing how you think, the words you use, the feeling in your heart, the expressions on your face!

Believe me! It is liberating.

Kind of like God handing me His glasses with Hope and Faith Lenses

letting me see

what God sees

and

it

changed

everything

Unconditional Love knows how I love is not determined by success or failure
Recognizing that sometimes failure is the biggest step to success,
resulting in my needing to step back,
take my hands-off
hold the tears inside
staunch the fear that tries to rush out with a mental and emotional tourniquet
choke off words that do not need or are not ready to be said
believing that failure is sometimes the gas to the engine of success

How do you  know when you are loving unconditionally? Unconditional Love is like invisible ink. While the invisible ink is made visible by heat, another chemical or ultraviolet light, unconditional love is made visible by uncomfortable situations resulting in pain, disappointment, anger from another’s behavior. So how do you know when you love unconditionally? When you are uncomfortable, don’t really want to, aren’t feeling it, but choose to love anyway – then you are loving unconditionally.

PPPPSSSSsssssssttttt. . . . Unconditional Love – the God-kind of Unconditional Love is not reserved just for your very favorite people. It is a type of love that is like a Spring Rain, showering on everyone who comes into contact with you.

Unconditional Love is found in a Mary Poppins-Bag-kind-of-heart that is deep enough to fill with love for as many people, not as it can hold because the Mary Poppins bag is bottomless, but for as many people as you choose to love. It is priceless!

Unconditional Love grows, and groWS, and gROWS and GROWS

over days, with months, years

in sunshine and storms

if we let it

if we don’t hoard it

Then it grows, re-seeds, spreads like buttercups in a field

Unconditional Love is a choice.

Choose Unconditional Love

  1. Unconditional Love Rule #1: The Greatest Sacrifice of All
  2. Unconditional Love Rule #2:  Tear Ducts Required
  3. Unconditional Love Rule #3: Always Finds A Way
  4. Unconditional Love Rule #4: No Condescension Allowed
  5. Unconditional Love Rule #5: Wait with Grace
  6. Unconditional Love Rule #6: Drags Unwilling Feet
  7. Unconditional Love Rule #7: No Complaining Allowed
  8. Unconditional Love Rule #8: Releases
  9. Unconditional Love Rule  #9 Stops Talking
  10. Unconditional Love Rule #10: Meets Others Where They Are

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Tonight, a little worn out from my new job, cooking dinner, washing a bit of dishes – and I just wanted to write and go within myself. Unleash the thoughts bottled up during work.

My little guy, he came in as I sat down. “Can you help me now?” he asked. “Help me clean my room and move the bed. I’ve got the Lego’s picked up.”

My illustrator, he likes his room organized. Sometimes, it explodes with all his creativity – and he just needs companionship to muddle through it.

I left my quiet time, fenced in those racing ideas – and followed my son, my illustrator. Not as though I had lost something or as though something was taken from me. Interaction was intentional, focused – on his words, his ideas, his goals – and the being together, the interaction.

In the fasting of self, true love grows, with seeds left over for sharing.

Unconditional love fasts self and counts it blessing.

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Unconditional Love cries – because sometimes it just has to. . .

God knew we would need to cry. He created tear ducts, after all. Sometimes great joy and great sorrow so threaten to burst the seams of our mortality that without these tear ducts, we would explode.

He knew there would be times of weeping, even wailing – in darkened closets so our children don’t hear or within the arms of our loved ones. He tells us so (Ecc. 3:4).

He knew there would be days our souls would scratch with the emotional sackcloth of grief, humbleness, and, yes, even repentence. He said so (Psalm 30:11).

I am not talking about crying over the big things like death, just the living and growing things, as simple as word and action challenges with our children.

For you and for me, we cry – sometimes over the same things. Sometimes it is the straw that breaks the camels back that starts a torrent of tears. That straw for me might leave you incredulous, “You’re crying over that?” The straw that breaks you might lead me to look askance, “You’re crying over that?” That realization humbles me – different catalysts might cause that breaking point where our heart angst moves those tears inside out.

But I bet the underlying reason for all those tears – is a mother’s love.

Because mothering is not always easy. Mothering hurts – and unlike childbirth, there are no pain medications offered for day-to-day mothering to help minimize or control the pain.

Except for these tear ducts.

In the last few years, there has been something new mixed in with my tears. Prayer. Scripture. Murmurings of faith. Instead of turning my grief, my hurt, my over-whelmedness inside, I turn it out  – my prayers spoken in tandem with those tears,  “Lord Jesus, Have Mercy on Me. . . .Greater is He that’s in me than He that’s in the World. . . The Lord is my Rock, my Fortress, my Deliverer. . . Deliver me. . . Deliver my child. . . Be with me. . . . Be with my child. . . .”

Because if my spirit is so grieved, then how must my child feel? be? need? I cry because there is a need – something that affects not only their now but their tomorrow. And inside me, maybe it’s the helplessness, the over-whelmingness, the solution blindness, the hurt, the frustration, the cross-eyed exasperation – and the straw that broke the camel’s back – it bubbles up like a shaken soda pop – and overflows into the messiness of a wailing soul evidenced by these tears that slip through those ducts that God made just for such an outpouring of need. . . for Him.

“You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book” (Psalm 56:8)

Unconditional Love cries to release the pain in our mother hearts. Those tears are not all about us but also for the one we cry for, cry out of love for. When we cry out of love, not selfishness, I think, God honors those tears, that unconditional love that fill us to the brim so that it overflows through out tear ducts.

Sowing love through tears. Sowing prayer through tears. Sowing hope and faith through tears.

Yesterday, I cried over a straw-that-broke-the-camels-back reason. And God collected those tears in His bottle, recorded the story of each tear – and the prayer, the faith, the hope prayed with each tear – those tears will be answered with songs of joy, each wail will have the opportunity to turn into a song to which we dance with joy.

God was prepared for those tears. He was waiting to collect them. He wants our hearts to love like that.

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