Y’all know it is. So many demands. The list. The list rules my world. The time crunch. Many afternoons I get home and just crash and burn. No strength left to do the laundry or the dishes or take the kids to the park. Often the mundane tasks of just daily life can take a huge toll on us. We become whiney. We start to believe that everyone and everything is against us. We become joyless. We walk around with a puckered up face like we are eating a lemon. It is shameful to admit, but I get asked (a lot) why I have such a bad look on my face. I truly didn’t realize that I did, but I am guilty as charged. I think I am just in a constant mode of deep thought. I am checking off the ever-growing list in my mind while simultaneously trying to think of new ways to change the world, you know?!
Then this morning a bible verse reached out and smacked me upside the head. You know what I mean. That’s what God does to get our attention when we are focused on too many other things.
“…freely you have received, freely give.”
And the conviction began. I instantly realized the state of selfishness that I often live in. How many times do I snap at people because I am stressed? How often do the people around me get the bottom of my barrel attitude? When I walk the halls of the school am I intentionally being a kind human being? Am I intentionally throwing joy around like confetti? Yikes.
When people push my buttons, step on that nerve, and just make me cranky…what is my reaction? How do I treat them? Do I disregard them and put my emotions and myself first? Yes, usually I do. However, Jesus said, “…freely you have received, freely give.” I am so underserving of everything he has given me, yet he gave. He gave freely. He gave regardless of how he felt day to day, and he did it without grumbling. He served the entire human race, always putting others first. He is looking down on us watching our every move. He doesn’t disregard us when we do the wrong thing or make a monumental mistake. He doesn’t give up on us. He is rooting for us. He isn’t rude or snide. He gives us another chance. HE is our biggest fan and our biggest cheerleader. This is one more reason why my prayer, my heart, my struggle is to be more like Jesus. Whether it is my family, my co-workers, the kids at school, or the babies in my AWANA group – please Jesus let me love them like you do. Don’t let me disregard them.
Life can be hard. It can be tiring. However, we were placed here to serve others. So serve joyfully. Kids deserve our best, and so do adults.
My challenge for myself –
The love that Jesus gives…freely give.
The grace that Jesus gives…freely give.
The mercy that Jesus gives…freely give.
The joy that Jesus gives…freely give.
The hope that Jesus gives…freely give.
The forgiveness that Jesus gives…freely give.
The patience that Jesus gives…freely give.