Friday, March 25, 2011

Why Do We Withhold Love & Gratitude?

My refrigerator wears this white board dressed in black letters of love

Simple thanks! 
Simplest of words conveying the grandest of messages!

I love you—I appreciate you—You mean much to me—
I am grateful for YOU!

It’s the being together, not the giving of gifts.
It’s the fellowship, not the food.
It’s the laughter, not the same stale stories or new.
It’s the love opened and poured out upon one another . . .

Like the perfume once filling a woman’s alabaster jar, the jar broken—extravagant perfume lavished upon the dirty feet of a Teacher, a Prophet, a Lover of sinners.  Her hair oiled in fragrance and tears wiped His feet with gratitude.  Unwelcome in that place, she found welcome at His feet.  She could not withhold her affection, her gratefulness . . . 
her love!

How then can I? 
For Jesus? 
For those around me? 
For those I live with? 
For those I sup with? 
For those I learn with?
For those I struggle with? 
For those who hurt me out of their own hurt? 
For those who don’t get me—and don’t try to? 

The words have lived on my board several days now.  A quick grab of the door to grab the juice and the words, once again, grab my heart. 
I am loved! 
I am wanted! 
I am appreciated!
I am significant to the lives around me!
I am grateful for the words given in gratitude for me!

Who among us does not need to hear such words!

Some times the words are easy to give, other times notBut simple or difficult we don’t take the time to offer word gifts.  We don’t recognize the opportunity to love.  We don’t always look to see.  And even when we do—we don’t always actWe withhold gracious love and heartfelt gratitude because it’s inconvenient, we’re busy or we are—simply, unwilling.

For you, dear Jesus, I promise to love and not withhold gratitude and affection.  Holy Spirit, only by your help and grace can I extend to others what I “feel” is withheld from me.  Out of love for you, Father—I will let it be known by words and deeds that I am grateful for this creation of Yours that bears their name!
. . . Amen!

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