As many of you know I spend most of my days in my house with my little munchkins.
Many of those days I try to leave the house, even if it’s for something small, like to go to the store to grab an ingredient I need for dinner. I sit the girls in the buggy designed like a car and swing by the bakery to get them a free cookie. That cookie and car-shaped buggy have saved my life multiple times, let me tell you. Sometimes, I will take them to the park or the library and then coax them away with the promise of something “special” aka french fries.
For me, getting out of the house is good. If I stay cooped up too long with the little people and a serious lack of adult conversation I start to think too much. And sometimes, my thoughts get the better of me. They try to run rampant in my mind. Dredging up scenarios about this or that. And after just a few minutes I’m a basket-casey.
Haha. See what I did there?
So, lately I have been praying...a lot.
Pacing back and forth in my living room with my bewildered children looking on. I know it’s really good for them to see me pray my guts out, worship at the top of my lungs, even to let the tears flow, and for them to see the dancing. Oh, the dancing is the best part because they can barely maintain composure at the sight of their mother dancing. And why should they? They're always invited to the party.
Sometimes, I catch Rivers (my oldest daughter) dancing with sheer delight just because she can.
The songs she sings about God have a different tone and rhythm to them. “Holy, Holy, Holy God” she sings while holding her baby to her chest. I watch in amazement and I can’t wipe the smile from my face or the gratitude from my heart. And Q, my little one, her dancing is more like rolling out the pizza dough with no roller or dough, but squats. Lots of squats.
They are a gift from God.
They are my constant reminder that God exceeds our expectations because I never knew I could love someone so much.
The enemy would like to take that love and use it against me. If it is not securely rooted in the love I know God has for me and the love He has for my children, I will end up looking to the love I have for my children as a means to an end. I will start relying on that love in a way that will only drive me to despair because I am an insufficient source.
Apart from God I can do nothing. Yet, I continue to try. But, why?
Yes, I feel deeply. I love deeply. But unless I trust that God loves me, it is all for nothing.
I love Him because He first loved me.
This is the crux of the Gospel.
The love of God is trustworthy. I’d stake my life on it.
I cannot base it solely on what He has done for me in the here and now. I cannot say He loves me because I got a good parking space or because I got an "A" on a test or because I got the promotion I wanted. Those things are reminders of His love, but they are not the whole. If we are depending on those things to move us forward in our relationship with Him we will be sorely disappointed. The beautiful things that happen in day-to-day life are there to inspire gratitude and are ultimately meant to lead us back to greatest defining act of love in all of history – The cross.
I know God loves me because He died for me. That is an infinite source of assurance.
When we talk about Jesus let’s remember this.
If we purely live out the Gospel, then everything else will fall into place. Too often we want to prove ourselves, or God, or church and we get caught up in the sheer emotion of it all. We want to scream it at the top of our lungs inside the church because it’s easier than living the Gospel everyday outside of it.
I am GUILTY.
I have lived the Sunday-to-Sunday Christianity. I have been frustrated at my inability to translate my faith to my regular, everyday life.
Unfortunately, with social media we can post a scripture or a thought about God and think we’ve done our part. Again, guilty.
But the love, the love that God has for us...that trustworthy love makes me want to just jump out of my skin. It makes me want to look you in the eye and tell you that you too, are loved.
Remembering that I am loved helps me to put down my phone and forget about it.
That love helps me to do the dishes, cook the meals, and bathe the kids.
That love helps me not react in anger.
That love comes from a never-ending Source. It will never run dry. It will never disappoint.
And this is grace...
…it’s the love that God has for us, put into action in every area of life, empowering us, in spite of ourselves. (Tweet This)