Monday, June 18, 2012
from a friend. . .
To my Christian friends, I caution you. Love is not a well-behaved child. Love is not the sterile portrait of a perfect family who hides its imperfection to please others. That is an illusion. Love is messy. Love is when a woman is dragged from bed while committing adultery, half-naked, drenched in shame…and the one who could have accused her writes in the dirt to preserve her dignity and disperses her accusers with one sentence. Love is when a prodigal son limps home, dirty outside and in, and is met not by a lecturing father looking to score points…but by a tear-filled father who runs and hugs him. Love is the servant Jesus on his knees washing his disciples’ feet. Love is a prostitute given another chance. Love is what compels an innocent Savior to be whipped, beaten, spat upon and nailed to a cross. This is where love lives. If you learn to embrace the imperfection in your daily life–that husband who means well but doesn’t always know the right thing to say, the overwhelmed wife who lacks self-respect because she’s always trying so hard to make everyone happy, the little boy with the huge mouth and heart to match, the teenager flailing away searching for himself and his independence–then you will discover that right in the middle of this mess is where love lives. Yes, love is cleaning up your child’s vomit. Love is seeing the best in others even when they are mean to you. Love is having the self-respect to tell that abusive spouse you would rather be lonely than treated that way. Love doesn’t run, hide, ignore or hope the mess goes away. Love sees the imperfection and courageously faces it, forgives it, teaches it, works through it. I hope you find beauty in imperfection today.