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If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.
Love never gives up.~1 Corinthians 13:3-7, The Message Bible
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
Love doesn’t strut,
Doesn’t have a swelled head,
Doesn’t force itself on others,
Isn’t always “me first,”
Doesn’t fly off the handle,
Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.
Love doesn’t want…
I confess that I felt a certain defeat on March 15, when the pastor of the church where I work said to the staff “Go home. We’re working from home.” Up until then, we were working 6 feet apart, dancing around one another not to crowd or be in anyone’s space. This announcement uprooted me, and my response was one of worry and anxiousness.
The Apostle Paul, in 1st Corinthians makes a list of what love isn’t and what love doesn’t do. One point on the list is “Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.”
When we closed the office and began working from home, I remember my first thought was “I’m going to go crazy.” How will I be able to work from home? My work involved building community, and helping people make connections. How can I do this without people around to talk to?
I worried, I fretted. I wrestled with anxiety, unfocused energy, some sleeplessness. I often grumbled to myself. Sadly, I felt myself suddenly and helplessly alone. And I wanted much for a while – a roommate, a social life, my office space, collaborating partners, as well as peace of mind and spirit.
Love trusts…becoming grounded
Today, it’s May 5 – almost two months working from home. While I miss the office, the work flow, the conversations over tea and coffee, the laughter, the smiles and small encouragements – with wonderment – a certain feeling of groundedness has settled in. Perhaps it’s the time spent in nature, hiking around Hillsborough and Duke Forest, or spending time in gardens around the Triangle, I feel fine, almost like I’m on a sabbatical of sorts, where there’s more time for my work life balance to synergize. There’s more time to read, study and reflect on theological and spiritual authors I’ve only skimmed the past few years. Creative, artist energies have made themselves present in my work. And….more importantly…
….spiritually, I feel open to a relationship with God that’s been on the margin for many years now. I see that Love is alive and at work within my soul – my spirit is soaring. Like the roots of the trees digging deep within the earth, my feet are on solid ground. Like branches reaching up to the heavens, my arms stretch up and invite Love in.
There is renewed trust in God, and I am looking for the best to come out of this. Healing has happened for myself in a way I never expected, and I hope this will be an exciting time to move forward, in love, with the grace of all that is holy.
We Are All in This Together!
I share all this with you, dear readers – humbly – as I know that this time is different for all of us. I know that I’m a person with particular privilege to be able to have this time for growth and healing, when so many are having a difficult time and suffering. In a spirit of hope I share with you as it’s my prayer that from deep within that we can embrace one another and be there to help one another. It’s with this spirit I share, as I hope that maybe my words can bring some joy and peace of mind to someone who needs uplifting.
Deep in Prayer
I am in prayer, dear reader, for you and for us all! God’s love is vast, and God’s love does not give up. In this spirit, let’s not give up on ourselves and others.
If you need prayer and encouragement, please feel free to let me know. We’re in this together!
Much peace and many blessings, to you and yours, fellow traveler.
~~Friends, do not let yourselves become too isolated during this time. Reach out and continue to connect as much as you can. Fear, anxiety and isolation can take it’s toll. Stay strong. Stay connected. Need prayers – drop me a line.~~
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