Sunday, October 14, 2012
We love because He first loved us
"This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends."
Christ is so good to me. He knew my need for a savior before I even asked. Before I was even born. From the foundations of the universe, Christ was prepared to come die on the cross to save me from my sins. He didn't wait to ask me "Clarissa, how can I save you from this wretched state of sin your in?" I wouldn't know what to say to that. As a matter of fact, my prideful heart would probably respond "Don't you worry. I know I'm a sinner, but I can probably solve this on my own." Thank the Lord he didn't wait for my answer. Christ came and died for me while I was still a sinner (Romans 5:8), before I even knew I needed Him. I know no greater love than that.
With my husband being away I do my best to "keep it all together." I know I have it relatively easy: I get to stay at home with my son and not work. But I still struggle. I definitely grow weary of doing it all on my own. Today I was blessed by two very small acts of kindness. Really, they were true examples of the love of Christ. The first person to do this was a man named Dante. I was just leaving a meeting at church when I passed Dante. He saw me walking to my car carrying my son, his car seat, the diaper bag, and my purse. Ask any mom and they'll tell you this is no small task. But I have gotten used to it and was on my way out when he stopped me. Without even a blink, he took the car seat and baby and walked them over to my car. He didn't wait for me to ask (I honestly have gotten so used to doing it I wouldn't have even thought to ask for help), but he knew. I don't know if Dante reads this blog or not, but I want him to know I literally cried tonight thinking of what a blessing it is to have someone see a need and just fill it. No questions asked. Dante, you might deny it but the love of Christ poured out of you then as you blessed me with that small act of kindness today. Thank you for reminding me of how good my God is.
Now for the next person. See the picture above? That's my beautiful sister-in-law Ericka. Tonight the Lord knew what a rough night I was having. Tears were welling up in my eyes from shear exhaustion. My baby was vomiting food everywhere (the sofa, my clothes, the floor), he was in CONSTANT need of attention, diaper changes were never ending, I just needed a time out. But I was alone. Ericka texted and asked what I was doing. Trying to be strong, I didn't mention my difficult evening. I just told her I was home. She then asked if she could come over to help out. Background info on Ericka: Her husband is a pastor and he has been gone all day working. She hasn't had a break either. It was near her infant sons bedtime as well. Yet she laid down the the comforts of her life to drive to my house to help me. Thank you sister, for showing the love of Christ to me tonight. You were ready to help without me even asking.
Today Christ gave me a whole new understanding of John 15:12-13. I always thought I would be willing to give my life up for my friends. If I ever found myself in a situation where a gunman was like "I'm gonna take a life today, who's it gonna be?" I pictured myself raising my hand saying "Take me" while my friends got to live. Heroic, right? Not so much. I know the likeliness of that happening are slim to none. Not so heroic if you never expect to really do it. Today Christ showed me I can DAILY lay down my life (the comforts of my home, my predictable routines, money, time, energy...) for my friends. And true love would do it as Christ did, without even being asked. So I have to ask for forgiveness friends. I know I have not been living up to this standard. But the Lord has put it on my heart to write this blog post so now I have some accountability :) I promise I will take this verse to heart and be a true friend to you all. I want my actions (like the actions of Dante and Ericka) to bless you and ultimately remind you of how great Christ's love for you is.
1 John 3:16-18
"This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth."