Another Bob Goff quote:
"Will know we are growing when our love for people dwarfs our opinion about them."
The Beatles used to sing, "All We Need Is Love". Today, I think a little common sense to go with it would be the cherry on top. But on the flip side, I am learning that love and common sense don't necessarily go together. God's love often asks us to step outside of what seems like common sense to trust his way and his heart.
Common sense... and I am a fan... can keep us focused on what needs to be done: organized to-do lists and goals. These things fuel our focus. Good things, right? But, they can impede love.
The things that hinder, obstruct and delay love... are they really so important? What if we changed our focus?
I continue to be convicted of my precious "busy". I have not fixed it, but I am working on it. When I am busy, I miss the moments. I miss the opportunities. I miss the chance to be fully present, fully engaged and to love with a wild abandon. Memories are made in moments, not day planners.
But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how God's abide in him?
-1 John 3:17
The funny thing is, love cannot be emptied. The source is endless. Christ is the source. God is love. His Spirit within us cannot be bankrupt. This quote stirs me:
“I have found the paradox that if I love until it hurts, then there is no hurt, but only more love.” - Mother Teresa
This is why people return from mission trips exhausted and exuberant. It is why "random acts of kindness" are so much fun. It is what is contagious in the "Special Olympics" (Thank you Lord for these special people... love warriors... who help us see you better.) It is where we start to discover that God wants us to live in love far more than he wants us to attain "perfection".
Seriously, he is not worried about perfection. He sent Jesus to cover that problem. We are covered by the blood and we are free. Our assignment: Love God. Love everybody else.
There is freedom in learning to love people. Really love them. Not to make them look, talk and act like me... but to love them right where they are. Ask, what can I learn from them... not what can I give or teach. Love is a two way street.
Sweet Lillian... a young lady I adored in my days working in Alternative Education... she taught me how to safely discern if roadkill was safe to cook and prepare. (I pray I never need to use that knowledge.) Still, I was awed that she knew how to provide for her children if God presented the opportunity and they were hungry. She taught me that love throws paint on styrofoam to be hung on a wall. She created art for her humble home. She savored any extras she could provide. She taught me so much about love and I will never forget her.
Love changes everything.
Today, I am grateful that love is bigger than opinions.