A LA CARTE LOVE

Special inside scoop…last week, I wrote what I thought would be today’s post. This morning, I prepared to polish and post that Christmas related essay. I consistently save frequently and know that essay is “somewhere.” I’ve searched flash drives, documents, and desktop. It’s nowhere to be found for now.

I committed to posting a bi-weekly FROG Blog and won’t allow my technological fall down the chimney keep from delivering literary gifts God gave me.

I wrote the following 316-word essay this past January. Similar to our legendary stories (sometimes tall tales) about Santa and Christmas, maybe you can stretch your imagination with me.

How could this piece relate to our sometimes-seasonal relationship with our world, God and people? What impact does this essay have on your year-round Christmas journey?

“My conscience is clear but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me” (1 Cor. 4:4).

For better or worse. In sickness or in health. For rich or for poor. These promises are often part of marriage ceremonies. Husband and wife declare their unconditional love for each other until death. What about those times when a spouse lives in a physical sense, but their genuine love diminishes or dies?

I believe marital vows also apply to love we give and receive. It’s like an inner global warming when I offer and accept unconditional care for nature, God, each other.

Enduring affection isn’t confined to marriage. Undying thoughtfulness includes parenting, friendships, business partners and co-workers. Jesus didn’t call us to like all creation, but He instructed us to love all of God’s workmanship.

Sometimes during my self-serving seasons, I want to order love from an a la carte menu. I consider my activities, my money, my schedule, and people. Not my chosen people, but God’s kids.  I make decisions based on what I want to order from life’s daily menu. Sometimes I’d rather leave certain bites of life’s buffet under the table because they don’t satisfy my palette.

Paul wrote about his conscience being faultless according to human courts, but compared to God’s law, he was liable. “My conscience is clear but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me” (1 Cor. 4:4).

To me, this message Paul wrote to the Corinthians said he struggled with unconditional love. This biblical powerhouse experienced what I face. I have a different background than Paul, but from his story, taught through hundreds of years, he found that his conscience was currently clear but that didn’t make him innocent.

I consider myself to be generously kind most of the time. However, like Paul, I’m not spotless. Thank God He loves me unconditionally and I believe physical death will not part my relationship with Him.  

Lord, grant me a grateful, humble, ever-loving heart,

Christina

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