Love Relentlessly

I know of only one other love that out-loves relentless love, and that is unconditional love.
By my own definition, this was achieved but only ONCE, by a man named Love, when He took upon His Perfect Self the flaming guilt of this world and said that me and you, all of His children, would never again be kept from Love because of what we did, are doing, and will do.

Love said, “You are mine. You are forgiven. You are enough. I will never ever ever ever stop loving you. You’re free.”
. . . . . whoa.
So since I am unable to dispense that love to humankind, I am daily practicing the other love. Relentless love. Love that, best to its ability, puts itself aside in the name of another. Love that stays on its feet when all the defenses launch forward. Love that chooses kindness and mercy, even when the one on the other end of it doesn’t deserve it. Let’s not even get into what WE deserve.
Sometimes it will be easy: letting someone else take the parking spot for which you had been patiently waiting.
And sometimes it will feel like trying to digest a stick of dynamite.
The other day I was given the opportunity to relentlessly love someone who has been a constant thorn in my life. Sharp. Pokey. Irritating. Cruel. When it came to my attention that she needed relentless love, because her heart had been shattered into a million jagged pieces, I did not want to give it. I wanted to revel. Preen. Gloat. I wanted to sing “What comes around goes around.”
So I did.
For about 13 minutes.
Then I digested dynamite.
You guys, we are not here to do little things. We are here to do BIG GIANT HARD IMPORTANT THINGS. We are not here to love optionally or conveniently or occasionally.
We are here to LOVE RELENTLESSLY.
Which, I promise, my loves, is a thing of PRICELESS worth.
This print, on the other hand, and my effusive gratitude, you can have for a modest investment of $24.00.

Love Relentlessly

It’s My Heart Beating

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You wouldn’t know by looking at me,

but I’m sick.

Not in THIS moment. Right this moment I am eating a delicious bowl of rice in preparation for a workout. 3 months ago, however, I was writhing on the floor, every molecule on fire. 18 months before that, I was fighting for my life. Specifically not to take it into my own hands and end it. Pain. Pain. Pain. Depression.

Anxiety.

Delirium.

More Pain.

This was my world. My tiny, little, needle-sharp world.

Most days I would lurk near the kitchen window, look out, wonder what all the healthy people were going to do with their day. I became very angry with and resentful of healthy people, convinced that none of them were grateful enough for their lives. Today they would complain and grumble, spend hours worrying about things that didn’t matter, miss a thousand moments hand-stitched just for them.

During these horrific months that were just like geodes – bleak and hopeless on the outside, impossibly beautiful on the inside – I determined that being healthy is its own kind of affliction; blindness and apathy and joy atrophy.

Still. I envied them. Healthy people. Sometimes I would imagine trading places, dream about how I would spend their 24 hour day sooo differently.

I told the Lord, in one of my many pleas, bargains and wrathful monologues, that if He were ever to make me well enough again to leave the house, I would never take a minute of my life for granted.

Honestly, I’ve not been a perfect steward of the life He gave back to me. But I AM changed. I’m better. I think maybe sometimes God has to make you sick so He can make you better.

And fuller. And braver. And softer.

This life is gorgeous and brutal and fleeting. It’s NOT to be wasted. Not a smile, sparrow, or a sunset of it.

It’s ALL for ME and YOU. There’s a buffet of magic right outside your door. I swear it. I’m looking at it. It’s looking at ME. Reminding me I have eyes and ears, legs and feet, a tongue to taste, and lips with which I can kiss the love of my life.

I have no greater gifts than these.

I own nothing more precious than Right Now.

It’s just a business card, says the photo. “No. No, it’s so much more than that . . . it’s my heart beating.”

Holiday Hands

Friends,

Here is a fun, easy, powerful, inspiring, meaningful way to touch someone’s life and meet a great need. Glennon Melton from “Momastery” has put together an event called Holiday Hands. On the site hosted by Together Rising, you can sift through calls for help from hurting people all across the world. Some people want only a pen-pal. Some would love it if you sent a Christmas card to their grandfather who lost his wife this year and is having a difficult time remembering why he wants to live. Some would love a gift card to purchase clothes for their children. It’s up to you how you want to help, and there are hundreds of ways you can that won’t cost you a penny.

On the flip side–those of you who would like help or know of someone who could use a helping of kindness and generosity, go ahead and post the need, and within the hour you will see that there is more Love and Goodness and Light in this God forTaken world than you thought possible. Spread the word, be the word, share a word. Let people know that Love reigns supreme. 

And right now, find a way to meet someone in their suffering or let someone into yours. This is our job, our only job, to bear witness to each other’s lives, to do ALL THINGS with GREAT LOVE. Be the reminder that we are in this thing together; we are not alone! YOU are not alone.

Love & Blessings!

Together Rising

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