I’m guilty. Caught red-handed…guilty as charged.
You see, for the past year I’ve been distracted. I’ve let schedules and tasks and to do lists and all the things get in the way of something that is oh so important to me.
I love people. I enjoy meeting new people. I love my sweet friends. And, my family makes my heart beat even faster. I’m a people person.
But, recently, I realized I’ve let these people down. I’ve failed them. Not terribly…but, just enough that it breaks my heart.
The way I’ve lived my life shows my sweet kids — who mean the world to me — that work and my calendar and meetings come before them. And, after I’ve completed these “to do’s,” I have nothing left for them because I’m exhausted both emotionally and physically.
And that’s just my family. The friends that I once held so dearly have also slipped through the cracks of my hands. All my time is spent working and cleaning and focused on ME that I’ve neglected to reach out to them. I go day after day without so much as a text to see how they are.
A few days ago, I stumbled upon this verse ::
“Now that you’ve cleaned up your lives by following the truth, love one another as if your lives depended on it.” 1 Peter 1:22
There it is. Love one another as if your life depends on it. I wanted to crawl in a hole when I read that.
I’m neglecting to love others. If you saw how I lived my life, you would surely see someone who loves herself! But, loving others? It’s debatable.
According to 1 Peter 1:22, I am to love others with everything I have — all that I am — putting them first. Yep.
So, now what?! Well, to start, I’m checking my priorities daily. Am I putting work over playing with my kids? Am I zoned out on Facebook instead of talking with my husband? Am I reaching out to my friends, neighbors, and family to be involved in their lives? These are all questions I’m asking myself frequently. Somedays are easier to answer than others. In fact, just today I found myself so overwhelmed with all that I needed to do, that I started getting frustrated with my son while we were playing catch. The distraction and frustration I felt were horrible, and it warranted an apology to my oh-so-forgiving son. Yes, my 5-year-old shows me Jesus too.
Another thing you should know about me? I’m a perfectionist…a rule follower…Type A to a “T.” Which means this could feel like another item on my “to do” list. Instead, I’m choosing to be thankful for God’s grace, as well as, the grace of those whom I let down.
You see, it’s because of Jesus.
That’s why I love people. Jesus has called me to be His hands and feet here on this earth — to my kids, my husband, my friends, my neighbors, and the cashier at HyVee! I’m to be a light in the darkness. But, if my nose is buried too deep into my “to do” list and my eyes are focused on myself instead of Jesus, it will never happen.
I can’t be a light and love others on my own…it’s only by God working in and through me.