Live Loved

Words. I love them. If there’s a poster, wall hanging, bag, or plaque with a funny or inspirational quote I am holding it, reading it, and trying to talk myself out of buying it.

Walking across a bookstore, I paused when a poster caught my eye. Truthfully, it was one with that tiny, messy writing that my middle-aged eyes find difficult to read. Sigh. I’m glad I stopped, though.

Live Loved.

Live LOVED.

LIVE LOVED.

Wait. What? You know how your brain scrambles to make sense of things…I first thought it was the more familiar (to me, anyway), ‘Live. Laugh. Love.’ Live loved? Oh. Ohhhhhh.

I loved it! And hooray for me…I did not buy it! This is progress, people. But I did remember it. I’ve been rolling it around in my mind since. And today I woke up, knowing I was going to talk about it. What does it look like to ‘live loved’ I asked my barely awake self. I thought of the children I’d taught. The difference in a child well loved and one neglected, unloved, or even poorly loved is remarkable. The child’s academic achievement, growth, physical health, and relationships are all affected. Dramatically.

Human love is fragile and imperfect. But there’s a Love that never fails, that’s unconditional, that’s always there. His Love. If we walk this life living as though our Creator, our Savior, our Daddy God dearly, sacrificially, unconditionally loved us… and He does, of course.

I think living loved means:

  • Living confidently
  • Living free
  • Living healed and whole
  • Living with purpose and passion
  • Living with grace, forgiveness, compassion, and generosity

If I live loved…the implications are staggering. Everyone I come in contact with would benefit. I would, most certainly, benefit. What if His Church lived loved? Woah.

Today I wish you much joy, but I also wish you a life of living loved.

Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God

Oh, it chases me down, fights ’til I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine

I couldn’t earn it, and I don’t deserve it, still, You give Yourself away

Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God, yeah.

-from Reckless Love

A Thrill of Hope: Easter Blessings

I didn’t eagerly anticipate spring this year. Mom was gone and I just wanted the world to stay as I was-hunkered down, cold, quiet, numb. But spring persisted.

Fast forward a week or two. It was a gorgeous day, so I went for a walk. God is so sweet to me. I found myself rejoicing in the blue sky, green grass, and budding flowers. Joy snuck in. I felt a thrill of hope.

Time will not stand still for any of us. I’m grateful, because I would’ve chosen to remain tightly contained in my grief.

Today as I walked I was-again-reveling in the signs of renewal and rebirth all around me AND inside me. God is surely working in the midst of my grief. It hurts. I miss mom, but the intensity of it has dulled just a bit. Getting out of bed is easier. Dealing with life is easier. A thrill of hope.

I know that line is from a Christmas classic, but it stayed with me all day. I think it’s rather fitting for Easter. I know this weary soul is rejoicing.

“A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices,

For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn…

Christ is the Lord! O praise His Name forever,

His power and glory evermore proclaim.”

A thrill of hope...that is what I wish all of you this Easter. He is risen; He is risen, indeed.