This shack caught my eye. Roaming chickens looked for their next meal. A swing set made of tires and recycled metal stood as an eye-sore. Men congregated in chairs on top of a dirt yard. And, one man climbed through the side window as if it was his front door.
Is this a crack house?
That man hanging out by the front door, he must be out of work.
The woman, whose knees I could just barely see through the open front door, she must be baking in that 100 degree house with no A/C.
Then I saw her, a little girl. One much the own size and stature as my own little girl. One who would make your heart say, “Awww”. She came running out of the house with all her might and beelined to the play set next to my traffic-stopped car. Her mom, rose from her sitting postion, chased her, swooped her deeply into her neck and gave her one giant love hug.
A mother, much like me.
A mother driven by love.
Overwhelmed with God’s gift of motherhood.
My heart instantly connected to this woman because her great love was apparent. It shone like the top of the Chrysler Building.
And it touched me.
It reached over the fence to say, “You may live miles away from this woman. You may live entirely differently, but you are still driven by the same thing – LOVE.
By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:35
Love is the universal language that meets all hearts.
You may not know what to say, but love does.
Love transcends the boundaries of society, etiquette and race.
It is the greatest wonder of the world.
Love tramples down the barrier of initial perception;
it is the amplifier of real connection.
This woman pierced my heart. We may live miles away – she in Costa Rica and me in the US. We may have entirely different lifestyles, me in comfort and she with little, but she was the one with the lesson to teach me.
She taught me that when I judge, and often when I feel badly for someone, there is pride hanging out under that hood. If I really take a hard look into my inner workings, there is a girl wanting to stand a little taller, be a little prouder and seem a little wiser.
There is a girl that says, “Too bad they aren’t like me.”
It may be disguised in a heart of service or care, but I should never fool myself into thinking I am the great giver. Because when I make the choice to stand above, rather than with, I lose the opportunity to let God work – in.
I wear the guise of power-girl instead of seeing God as power-full!
Where do you hold power, see your power and exert your power?
How might God be calling you to lay down your status of power,
to raise up the power of his cross?
Judgement is often derived from one who (knowingly or unknowingly) thinks they stand in the power position – or at least that is how it worked for me.
1. an attempt to rise above our own weaknesses, so we feel better about ourselves.
Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? Mt. 7:3
Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven. Lu. 6:37
3. a quick-opinion on what could stand as a life-long struggle for another.
Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her. Jo. 8:7
4. a roadblock to the grace which is available to all hearts, at all times in all ways.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God. Eph 2:8
5. a prohibition of authenticity in our relationships.
We become fearful that others may smile and slap us in the face much in the same way we have done to others.
Judgement rides your worth high for a moment and then drops you in shame before you know it. It puts an ocean of differences between two people who have much of the same mess, playing out in different ways.
We are all people on the great hunt for love.
We are all just crazy, sometimes lonely, often emotional, people
in search of something to bring us peace, hope and joy.
We are all searching, but if we are judging,
how can we help others to go about finding the answer – Jesus?
I don’t want to be so caught up in the wrongs of others, that I forget to reach them with the rights of Christ.
In this, I will never forget this woman, not because of where she lived, which is memorable, but because of how she loved. In that moment, I saw our great connection – she and I could be friends.
She taught me to see the things that are the same, to see the love and to make that the connection point.
I never expected to get this lesson from her, in this way, but, there are probably many who have gotten a lesson in pride along a trafficked road.
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19 CommentsLeave a comment
Beautiful post. So true and something just recently revealed in my own heart. Thank you for shaRing this timely message. Pride is sneaky and creeps in. Praise God we have the Holy Spirit to guide and correct us to bring us back to the feet of Jesus
Thank you Deb. It can be a hard thing to see when you take a deep look. Thank you for your comment. I loved hearing your thoughts.
Love the picture you painted and the lessons from it! So true…
Thank you Jenn. May we see others the way Jesus sees us!
“when I make the choice to stand above, rather than with, I lose the opportunity to let God work – in.” These words of yours, Kelly, cause me to pause. I pray I remember and apply them so only God is elevated and glorified by the choices I make. Thank you, Kelly. : )
Let’s stand with! All to his glory. Be blessed today Crystal!
Great post! Neat perspective on that way of thinking. Pride. It does creep in. Sometimes it’s unrecognizable until you read something like this and the Holy Spirit tugs at your heart. Thanks for sharing!
Thank you Michele, it is a sneaky little thing. I pray that you and I can lay down at the feet of Christ in humility.
Kelly, your words are oh so true. We are all in search of love. THIS: “We are all just crazy, sometimes lonely, often emotional, people, in search of something to bring us peace, hope and joy.” All the yeses!!
We are. Oh now we need him! Come Jesus, more and more.
Stand WITH not above! Oh how I love that. Admittedly, sometimes I get an air of superiority about myself, but that’s not who I want to be. I pray that God can help me see eye-to-eye with those I come into contact with…that we may find a common ground no matter how different our lives are.
I know Laura. It’s hard sometimes. I understand. God hears our prayer to change and he will be faithful to us always.
Oh, I’m the master of the quick opinion–it’s a terrible habit I need to loose. I’m working on it, and I’m a work in progress. Thank you for reminding me that we are all on the love hunt–and the way we feel comfortable ‘giving’ love, might not be the way God wants us to love.
I hear you Anita. The really good thing is that you are aware of it. You are a work-in-progress and he has you!
Such a beautiful picture you’ve painted for me, Kelly. I read something just short of a couple months back and it put “love” into new perspective for me. It is truly the link that connects us all together. No matter where we live or what we believe – if there is love there is hope that will build bridges to all of those places we always told ourselves we couldn’t go. I am grateful for love. I’ll be joining you on that great hunt…
I love the idea of loving building bridges to places we can’t go. Great imagery and idea. Let’s love more than we look to judge. God has some big things to work through love. Thank you for your comment Jennifer.
That verse you shared in John 13… the one about loving others, it is on replay in my mind so often. I think about as I sit and listen to harsh words, condemning words, that never need to be uttered. I want it to be the retort that comes out of my mouth, laced with my own bit of sting so people see, but then I wouldn’t be practicing the point would I? 🙂 I ask myself… what would love do? What if that was my lens? It makes a huge difference in how we respond when we do that, doesn’t it?
Thanks for sharing this story. Beautiful words and encouragement always find me here. Love is seen your actions, Kelly!
I love the question, “What would love do?” Powerful. I think I would act a lot differently if that was my guide. Thank you for this thought.
Thank you so much for sharing Kelly, I really needed this! Your point of ” I don’t want to be so caught up in the wrongs of others, that I forget to reach them with the rights of Christ” was an absolute heart zinger. I’ve been hurt by so many people the last few years, but I have been learning that I need to let Him take care of it. I don’t know what He has up His sleeve, but learning how to forgive is something that I know I need to do.