Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Love is A Verb

I have never been one to read more than one book at a time! I guess it comes from my need to complete a project before I start another...I don't know. BUT, as I got into my bed last night- I told Lupe that I was feeling pretty smart with my stacks of books and notebooks beside my bed- and I am in the middle of reading 4 of them (and Yes, that's Tenly's artwork on my Message Bible)! Anyway, the newest one I am reading is the book for our Mom's Bible Study, "Real Moms, Real Jesus"- it is such a great book- but I'll get to more of that in a bit.
I am so pleased to report, that I have a much anticipated "Meeting" every Monday evening! Okay, not actually meeting as much as a great time of "nothing" with my friend, Kim. We used to do this commonly and then summer came and scheduling conflicts with it and it just stopped. Well, Kim and I decided we were way past due and restarted our wonderful "nothing time". Just us and a cup of coffee in Starbucks with no agenda, but just to "be". This past Monday, we found ourselves discussing many different things- some with no depth and others very deep. One of the topics was, our witness to others in our daily lives/activities.
Kim and I were both raised in church and have memories of going door to door to witness to people with our families and churches- something that doesn't happen much anymore. Anyway, we were discussing what the most effective "witness" is- it can be very different for each person, I guess. She and I both agreed that to us, is The Love of God that people see in us.
My husband Lupe is a perfect example of this. In his position at work, he works alongside many people. Upon meeting these people, he didn't shake their hand declaring he was a born again Christian and telling each of them all of the unGodly things they were doing. Lupe did his job and conducted himself in a Godly manner and jumped on every opportunity to share the Love of God with his co-workers- and every time the response went something like this, "I KNEW it- I knew you were a Christian- there's just something different about you!" or "Is that why you're always so calm and happy all the time? Is that why you never get mad or stressed- because you're a Christian?" The same thing happened to me at work- I never came out and made a loud declaration of my Christianity- but every opportunity that arose for me to talk about the Goodness and Love of My God- I took. Two of my co-workers told me, "See, I knew it- that's why I never cussed around you, because I had a feeling you were a Christian."
I was reading the third chapter in "Real Moms, Real Jesus" after Kim and I had coffee that night. Ironically enough, it was about having a Gentle Spirit and gave the example of "The Woman at the Well" in John 4. It talked about the way Jesus talked and spent time with the woman and eventually, very gently, inquired about the man she was living with. He didn't condemn her or rebuke her- He loved her and spent time with her- and that drew her in and caused her to want to change.
There are times, that I have been told or even thought maybe I need to be more aggressive about God- but between my conversation with Kim and reading this- I walked away with the reassurance that The Love of God is what draws others in. Having empathy, compassion, and just listening can often leave the biggest life changing effects on others. Not to say that there aren't things I need to do differently and be more passionate about- but I am convinced that allowing others to see the love of Jesus in all we do, say, and live has a far greater impact than the best sermon that the best preacher could ever preach.
O lives should be the greatest sermon.........................

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