Blog

How a Simple act of Kindness changed my Life…

tea

 

This morning my heart has really been fighting to stay positive.  For some reason the past little while I’ve been feeling down and out, and honestly not very happy or joyful at all.  I know we all come across times like this, but for some reason I’ve been having a difficult time shaking a sense of a heaviness and loneliness that’s been weighing my heart down.  I’ve been talking through it every day with Jesus, and to be honest, I continually feel this heaviness.  I’m not blaming Jesus for any of these feelings, but I am learning through the process that His love is so constant, and that He never gives up on me…and it’s truly not the end of the world for me to experience this.

I decided to take a trip to my favorite restaurant, Chick-fil-a this morning after dropping Allie off at preschool so I could get my favorite drink.  After all, if Chick-fil-a doesn’t brighten your day, then what can, right?  So I order my large half and half tea.  Too much sugar if I didn’t make it half and half, you know?  Anyway, I was in line, waiting my turn at the window and when I pull up the guy at the drive-thru had a big grin on his face when he handed me my drink and said, “The person ahead of you paid for your drink, so here you go!”  I was definitely surprised.  I’ve always heard of this happening before to others, but it’s never happened to me.  Such a small, yet thoughtful, act of kindness, right when I needed it most.

When I pulled off, I began to cry…a lot.  God reminded me right then and there of a few powerful truths.  First of all, He reminded me that He hasn’t forgotten me. In the midst of everything else going on, all the shuffling of the kids to and from school and activities, cleaning house, doing laundry, and the poor attempts at making a healthy dinner, He sees me, knows everything about my heart, and has NOT forgotten me.  He loves me right where I am, right in the midst of how I’m doing, and the way I’m acting, and isn’t ashamed of me because I’m not doing more, working harder, or making the difference in the world that I think I should be making.  I am enough right where I am, and YOU are enough right where YOU are.

Another truth God reminded me of is that one little act of kindness and generosity can change someone’s life forever. FOREVER!  My life was changed because someone I didn’t know decided to buy my drink.  Not only that, when someone is blessed, they in turn, become a blessing to someone else and it can become a chain effect.  One SIMPLE and small act of the kindness of God.

Do you get it?  I think I’m finally starting to.  I don’t have to wait for a “big break” to make a difference.  I don’t have to be up on a stage singing or speaking to hundreds or thousands of people, or writing a blog or book that gets viewed by millions, or even hold a prominent position at a job somewhere where I’m moving up the ladder.  I can make a difference for Jesus every place I go, right where I am.  I don’t have to be living out my perfect dream to live God’s purpose for me…and that’s to love Him with my whole being and to love others.  This is God’s will for ALL of our lives!

I guess the question is, is it enough?  Is it enough for you to love God right where you are with all of your heart, soul, and strength?  Or are you and I waiting for something better? Something bigger so we REALLY can make a difference? How can we be a blessing to others we come in contact with every day? How can we show Christ’s love without expecting or needing something in return?

God is so amazing.  He loves you and me so fully, so passionately, and simply has a heart for your heart. He’s not in it for Himself or to get anything out of it.  He loves you for YOU.  He desires you…not what you can do for Him, but simply you.  He loves me so much and reminded of that clearly today by the simple act of having someone else buy my Chick-fil-a tea.

 

 

Let’s ask God one simple question…Lord, where and how can I show your love today to those around me?  Let’s take this opportunity to be the hands and feet of Christ.  Right where we are.

Love Well

This is a blog post borrowed from my other blog, “faith, family, & friends”

IMG_5339

December, 2015

This past week was a very difficult one for my family—especially my sister and her children.  My brother-in-law, who was only 47, died suddenly of a heart complication that was simply a fluke thing.  It wasn’t detected in any way.  In fact, he had just had a physical a few months before and everything was looking great. A fluke.  Something so small took his life and now my sister and her kids have to live without their husband and father for the rest of their lives here on this earth.

Something that I heard my sister say many times throughout the week following this horrible tragedy was this:  love well.  Love well.  What in the world does it mean to love well?  How do we do it?  The truth of the matter is we never know when we’ll breathe our last breath or when someone close to us will.  We never are promised tomorrow, but the thing is, most live like we have all the time in the world.  We don’t.

Love well.  This statement has made me think a lot about the people God has put into my life. Am I loving well?  Am I a good friend?  Do I live my life with others in mind or am I in it for me?  Do I lay down my life like Christ did to serve and bless those around me?  Do I tell the people in my life that they are important?  Do I treat others the way I want to be treated?  Do I genuinely love others when it’s hard and when the times get tough, or do I retreat because I don’t want to deal with their problems?  All of these are questions we need to think about.  Maybe we think, “I’ll do that tomorrow..” but the fact is, we don’t know if that will be an option.  Not to mention, we normally put it off again and again…but loving well is loving NOW.

The more I get to know Jesus, the more I realize that the only thing on this earth that really matters is God and each other. Period.  All these things we’re hoping to accomplish, making more money, getting our kids to school on time, keeping the house clean, going after the things of this world…a better house, a nicer car, a great job, all are for absolutely nothing.  They might occupy our time and give us something to do, but are we doing everything we do in the name of love, or for ourselves?  Can you honestly say you walked away from that person because it honored God?  I’m finally understanding why Jesus said in Matthew 5 that we need to drop everything and go make amends with the person who has something against you.  I guess it matters after all what people think, because they matter. Of course we don’t base our entire lives or allow someone else’s actions to determine our peace and joy, but it matters to the heart of God if there is a break in a relationship.

Loving well is seeking reconciliation in all of our relationships.  Loving well is forgiving each other, even when we don’t think it’s deserved…after all, we didn’t deserve forgiveness either but Christ died so we could have it.  Loving well is being there.  It’s being faithful.  It’s not letting go of someone when they make a mistake.  It’s loving God first, and allowing His great love to penetrate our hearts so we can indeed love others with His love.  It’s having compassion and patience with others.  It’s giving.  It’s serving.  It’s holding others when they need to be held.  It’s checking in on old friends just to see how they are doing.  It’s active.  Loving well isn’t sitting around waiting for others to come to you…it’s reaching out and loving them, even if you might be rejected.  It’s laying down your life for someone.  It’s also allowing others to love you in return, which is exactly what my sister is doing right now.  Allowing others to embrace her in her deep time of need—and that’s not always easy.

God said the entire law is summed up in this command:  to love God with all of your heart and to love your neighbor as yourself.  It’s so simple, but definitely not the easiest thing to live out in this life—but it’s our purpose for being here on this earth.

Love well.  Simple, profound words with so much depth and meaning coming from a beautiful one who just suffered great loss.  Let’s choose to remember these words everyday from now on that we have the gift of life.  Choose love.

Continue reading “Love Well”