Have you ever been stopped-dead in your tracks by love?
I had the privilege of living in Ontario Canada before moving back to Sydney Australia recently. My husband was an Associate Pastor at a church in Windsor. Sunday mornings were busy. And being a “Pastors wife” meant that people knew who I was. Each Sunday morning I’d enter the busy foyer filled with noise, people smiling-chatting about life whilst sipping their Tim Hortons coffee. I would have my eldest daughter, my son and my baby girl who would sit on my hip. The problem was, when we entered the church building I found myself having to be ‘on.’ People had requests, pastoral needs, concerns that they wanted to voice-the weekly list was similar but endless. My son who is Intellectually Disabled couldn’t cope with the noise and the attention, I found myself in a Sunday morning cycle of having him screaming down the building, me trying to comfort him and doing my best to continue the ‘urgent’ conversations.
It was then a lady who I had never met heard about my situation and decided to put love into action. She offered to shadow Sunny (my son) whilst he was at church. This would work in Sunny’s favour as he would have a consistent, predicable Sunday morning routine which would help him cope and free me up to assist those in need.
Every Sunday our new friend “Miss Jenn” would show up at 10:30am with a smile on her face and a heart filled with compassion and love for my little boy. Time ticked by, and soon they had a special friendship where secrets were shared, nicknames given and memories made.
I can’t help but correlate ‘Miss Jenns’ heart and the story of Jesus washing his disciples’ feet.
“After washing their feet, he put on his robe again and sat down and asked, “Do you understand what I was doing?” You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and you are right, because that’s what I am. And since I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash each other’s feet. I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you.” (John 13:12-15 NLT)
Jesus was teaching his disciples to serve God, one another and all the people that needed to hear the story of salvation. He was giving his mission statement in practical terms.
Love me and love others.
Does your life have a mission statement which plays out practically drawing others to Jesus?
You see, love is sacrificial-it gives to others even if it means we miss out. It is active, present and finds a way to reveal itself.
It is a conscious decision as we engage people daily. It’s the words we choose to speak and the words we choose to keep silent so others won’t be hurt.
Love is considerate and intelligent. It speaks less of our self and more about someone else’s story.
It’s seeing what others overlook and then doing something about it.
Love displays the character of Christ. Plain and simple, yet so challenging to live out.
“But the kind of love that God created and demonstrated is a costly one because it involves sacrifice and presence. It’s a love that operates more like a sign language than being spoken outright.” (Bob Goff, Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World).
‘Love’ opportunities come up on a daily basis. Do you see them?
Find a way to “love on’ someone today.