Love to You, Mary Lou!

The summer of my 6th year, I did a bold and daring thing.  I talked my mom in to signing me up for gymnastics classes.  For the last few years, I had watched those amazing girls on T.V. as they twirled around the uneven bars and tumbled across the large floor mats. I wanted to be that girl. I asked my mom if I could be the next Mary Lou Retton. She said,”Yes”, and signed me up.

It did not take a long time for me to realize this was not my cup of tea.  I realized this when I failed to execute a simple “penny drop” on the uneven bars. This is a cute name for a method of torture. I tried and tried, but I just couldn’t do it.  The tumbling was not much better and the balance beam proved to be my undoing.  I could walk around a little, but could not perform the smallest trick or stunt.  So I abandoned my “Mary Lou” dream and was content to watch the girls on the television.  I found out much later that the girls who could do such great things practiced about 7 to 8 hours per day.  More power to you, Mary Lou!

In my Christian life, I have struggled with balance also.  Over the last few years the Lord has taught me some things about myself and even more about who he is.  The balance I strive to attain will take a lot of hard work on my part, but it is also something that God has to do through me.  God has shown me some guidelines I can follow to become the Christian he wants me to be.

Let me briefly point out that these guidelines follow salvation.  When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, we become part of the family of God.  I believe God gives to his children guidelines in his Word to follow and obey.  The first guideline or “rock”, as we looked at in my last post, “Rock Hunting”, is that of pleasing God rather than pleasing men. We should want to please God in our relationships, homes, churches, and in the world.  We should desire to please Him above all.

The second guideline is to “love others”. Let me start by saying that God has given to each of us a great capacity to love.  We were made in the image of God.  We were fashioned by Him and made in His likeness.  Who has greater love than God?  The Bible says that “He first loved us”.  Love is also one of the fruits of the Spirit. Love is at the heart of God.  We have been given the mandate to “Love”.

It is so easy to love the people who love me. This includes my hubby, my family, my parents, friends, etc.  I have a wealth of people who love me.  I have no problem loving these precious people. The problem begins when I am face to face with someone who does not love me. We all come in contact with those who we don’t like much less love.  You know who I am talking about that one individual who after approximately 30 seconds you long to “pinch their head off”  hypothetically speaking.  It is the person who immediately comes to mind when the word “conflict” is mentioned, because they embody conflict.  As a was thinking about this topic, the Lord brought some verses to my mind from Philippians chapter 2.

  1. If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if an bowels and mercies,
  2. Fulfill ye my joy, that ye be like minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.

If there is going to be any love, fellowship or mercy, let it be for Christ’s sake.  Christ endured such great suffering so we could have life abundant not only here on earth but also in Heaven someday.  He experienced suffering on all levels: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.  He knew what it was like to be beaten beyond recognition and to have nailed driven in his hands and feet. He knew what it felt like to be rejected by his own people, the people he came to save.  He knew the heartache of being rejected by his Heavenly Father who could not look on the sin Christ bore for us. He was willing to take the punishment for our sin. How could we not be willing to put ourselves and our feelings aside and love the unlovely for his sake?

Let our love for others give Him joy.  The phrase that has echoed in my heart all day is “the same love”.  We need to have the same love for everyone even those who do not like us or go out of their way to irritate us. He wants us to connect with others by showing love to them. Does this mean we condone their sin or wrongdoing? No.  There are times when we can only love with Christ loving through us.  He knows when we are hurting and will be there for us.  We can love others even though we do not like what they are doing.  God, the Father, loves us even when we are disobedient to his Word.  Loving others is not always easy, but we are more and more like Christ when we love. 

The balancing act we try to perform in our Christian life is like trying to balance on the beam in the gym. Though we sometimes may fall, the mat of God’s love softens the blow.

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13 thoughts on “Love to You, Mary Lou!

  1. Pingback: Dating Blogfeeds » Love to You, Mary Lou!

  2. AWesome post Amy!

    and that husband of your is sooo funny 😉

    but I think the word is over rated, cause some people say it, but don’t really mean it!

  3. It is so true that love should be at the forefront of our thinking when relating to others–even the seemingly unlovable. We are often surprised to find a person hurting and in desperate need of someone to extend a loving heart to them. How we miss out on being an encouragement to someone in need when we don’t step out of our comfort zone.

    Great post….thanks for sharing your thoughts 🙂

  4. Amy,
    This was a great article. The life of being Christian is one which we must put our whole effort into and still realizing that it is God who accomplishes His work in us.
    Great illustration of the gymnastics.
    T.A.

  5. Hi Amy,
    I am glad to be able to give you many good topics to write about and even more gladder you didn’t pinch my head off after the first Sunday that you and Bro. Gordon and boys ever laid eyes on me ?

    I said to myself that the Holy Spirit was leading ya’ll cause both of you were so sweet that my sugar level went up that day and I hadn’t missed but one Sunday since that day ! ” God’s love is amazing ? ” BTW- That one day I missed I went to church with my son and his wife ?

    I guess what I’m saying is in the mist of the trials we are all glad that we are able to say ” Lord its hard to be Humble but I love Ya’ll much ? ”

    Blessings.
    Ron.

  6. Gordon, Thank you and I hope you don’t feel the need to “pinch my head off” either. Love you!!!!! 🙂

    Jel, We have a lot of fun at our house. It is never dull. Your comment is true. I have been focusing on my own heart of late and let God look on other’s hearts. I have learned some awesome things and will be sharing them soon. Glad you came by!

    Christy, Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Mine have been running in the same direction as yours and I hope to continue this thread in another post. Shaking up our comfort zone can be a transforming experience.

    Sarah, Good to “see” you! I am glad it was helpful to you. God bless you.

    Bro. Tim, The more I learn about the Christian life the more I am convinced that God wants to do it through us then He gets all the glory!!! Thanks for stopping by.

    Bro. Ron,
    I surely don’t want to “pinch your head off”. You have a great head on your shoulders. You have truly blessed me.

  7. Thanks for your good post here. It is easy to love those who love us, that’s true. Someone once said we love Jesus as much as we love the most unlovely one.

  8. Such a great post Amy. Balance is so hard to do, but essentail in our life isn’t it? We can only achieve it through God’s strength.

  9. Hey dear sister! Sorry for not having been by sooner.

    This is one great post! Thanks for sharing.
    I am not good at balancing, but I keep practicing. And the more we practice, the better we get. Practice makes perfect, huh?!

    Amy, your writing-abilities are wonderful. From the moment I start to read, till the end of the post you know exactly how to capture my focus and keep it there. I love it!

    Many blessings to y’all.

    God’s Grace.

  10. Kitty, When I try to accomplish anything without Him that’s when I am doomed to fail. It is all about what he can do through me.

    Corry, thank you for your kind words. I too have struggled with balance in my life, but God is rich in mercy and love. He does not give up on me when I struggle. I am so gratful for the grace He gives me daily. If practice makes perfect, I should be about there!!! lol, grin!!! Thanks for coming by; you are a blessing to me.

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