I’m beginning to realize that people don’t mess up on purpose.
So why do I find myself becoming irritable if I have to repeat myself to TDH or one of the kids? They didn’t not hear or misunderstand on purpose. (Except for our two oldest boys who have made a game out of seeing how many times they can get me to repeat myself before I catch on.)
But I have noticed that my irritation level goes up or down in direct proportion to how connected I am to God. (Notice I didn’t say how much time I’ve spent reading the Bible or in a quiet time—–I’m talking about living in connection with Him. In tune with Him. Knowing He’s an elbow-length away.)
When I’m connected, the faucet of love is turned on in my heart. When I’m not, there is nary a trickle going into my tank.
And when that tank is dry, my family and that school secretary, or that coffee barista is getting just plain ol’ me. And the disconnected me isn’t the one you want to pal around with.
No one deserves our worst self. We have a very limited amount of time to love people enough that they want to know why. Would we rather be right…or be kind, so Jesus can open a door to them?
When I’m connected to Jesus, it’s a no-brainer. Treat me abominably and I’m here to love you regardless. Disconnected? I will verbally fillet you.
What if the enemy sees that God is sending you into Starbucks to leak Jesus to the annoying barista? The one who rarely gets your order right or can’t stop smacking her gum.
The enemy is going to do all he can to create a clash instead of a connection.
What if God has sent us in as His emissaries of love and we pull out our swords? Not to lop off the enemy’s head, but to use them on someone who doesn’t know Jesus? Or who is a baby believer (and we just shoved them out of the cradle instead of kissing their downy little head—–not that it’s an easy image to keep in mind when that baby believer is 160 pounds of tattoos and attitude).
How tragic that we let the little things prevent us from walking in the greater things?
Do we really understand what it means to be His ambassadors of love?
It doesn’t mean that we become walking doormats, but it does help if we are in connection to God so we know when we are to lay our rights down in love and when we are to stand up and speak truth in love.
Both are necessary. But if we get them out of order or in the wrong timing, we can cause serious harm.
There is a reason God wrote in His book, “Love covers a multitude of sins.” (1 Peter 4:8)
Shower with love and give God an opportunity to woo someone’s heart.
Papa God, help me not to get trapped in the enemy’s snares and trip out of love and into offense. Let me be a friend that You can pour Your love through to others. Teach me what love looks like. A smile, a kind word. Letting a snarky comment pass and instead choosing a gentle response. Work out the areas in me that need to be removed and replace them with love. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Lion photo via Pixabay