Saturday, October 16, 2010

On Loving Others

Sometimes I mess up. 
Sometimes I know I really messed up. 
I let my emotions get the best of me.
And, even worse, I take my negative emotions out on others. 
It's a sad and embarrassing story. 
But true. 

The world would not judge me for the way I handled myself today. 
After all, I was completely justified in my reactions--
I had been been with teenagers since 6pm Friday. 
Said teens were at our house until 11:30pm and many stayed the night. 
I had to wake up at 4:45am.
I had to leave home at 6:00am with 8 teens in a 3 car caravan. 
No one was communicating. 
Everyone was making different decisions that I would have made (a.k.a. they were making the "wrong" decisions.) 
We got super lost. (And it might have been my fault.)
The people in charge were keeping things from running timely, according to my standards. 
Everyone except me loves eating at Taco Bell. 
I HATE eating at Taco Bell. 
OUR street was closed due to an accident. 

And so on and so forth. 

Yes, most people would understand my frustrations, my attitude problems, and my impatience. 
And many would even excuse my bad behavior. 

Jesus was disappointed in me. 
He watched as I let my temper loose on my loving husband. 
He was saddened when I didn't smile out of the joy that should have been made evident through every hardship I experienced. 
I didn't consider those irritating situations to be opportunities for growing in grace. 
To consider it pure joy to face such trials--in order that I might gain perseverance and that much closer to being mature and complete. 
Nope. I made the wrong choice and stepped further from the way Jesus laid out for me.
He gave me plenty of opportunities to let my conversations be seasoned with grace

I believe you don't want me to dwell on my failures.
You sent your Spirit to encourage me.
You wish to bring to light what desires to be kept hidden in the darkness of my shame and despair.
I want to learn. to change. to grow. 
To show you that the motives of my heart are of unswerving love for You,
and out of that abundance, my love for others will overflow.
Help me, Jesus, to recognize opportunities for maturity--knowing full well their challenge. 
I want to be different
I want my love to make YOU evident to those who wouldn't otherwise believe. 

Use me. 

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