looking through me

Tag: friends

love

Love.

Love steps up and steps in. Love is present.

Love is Dad holding my hair out of my face while the flu empties my stomach.

Love is the eldest carrying me down a dusty mountain road.

Love is the middle driving 275 miles so I won’t be alone in the desert on my birthday.

Love is Mom waking up early to bake my favorite coffee cake for every special occasion.

Love walks alongside. Love joins in. Love gets messy. Love sacrifices. Love stays.

Love lives in the action verbs.

Interesting . . . love has yet to speak. It can. It does. But words are trivial if not anchored in action.

God is love. Jesus—God with us—the Word made flesh came as love incarnate. Jesus loved when He wept—when He grieved the loss of His friend—just as much as He loved when He restored life and removed the reason to mourn. Love cried. Love worked. The Word is love. The Word is life. Words of love are words of life.

The affirmation spoken out of life-tested relationship: love.

The note to the friend far away: love.

The shared meal: love

Showing up to the wedding, the funeral, the everyday: love.

The doing, the being, the speaking—all of it—spills love into life. The memories of love may have a soundtrack or be silent, but they have action shot after action shot after action shot.

Love is present. Love is active. Love does.

God does. God is active. God is present.

 

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reaching out

Sometimes I think I need the exact right words. I need a perfect plan and predictable outcomes . . . assurance of success.

I want to say something, but what if my words grate instead of soothe? What if my timing is all wrong? What if I make it worse? What if?

So I stay silent. The words remain unspoken. Other words remain unwritten. The note card sits blank, the text un-composed.

The opportunity passes.

I wonder . . . what if I’d said something? What if some words—though imperfect—would have been better than no words? What if a piece of mail would have meant more than an empty mailbox? What if?

So I wrote three notes. I sent one message. Two got no response: maybe the words were wrong; maybe they chafed; or maybe it isn’t for me to know. And two got responses: the riskiest one—the note to the person I know the least—resulted in a teary hug and a heartfelt thank you; the other received an immediate text and not-for-the-world-to-know information, so I could pray more specifically.

But it wasn’t about the responses. It wasn’t about me at all.

Even as I fret over wording, my anxiety is misplaced. Offering companionship during difficult days is about presence, not perfection. Reaching out is not for my benefit.

I restock my card supply. I add reminders to my list. I turn my eyes from my fears to my friends. The outcomes aren’t mine, but the opportunities are.

 

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