So I’m going to take only a few minutes of time to explain a lifetime of struggles!!! The story begins with very early childhood memories of giving everything I had to those less fortunate, but became horribly real in 2011. I had always been taught to give what I had to God and to the poor, but never did the mention of doing it in love ever come out or get emphasized enough. So, therefore, I would give and sometimes give more than I had, but I gave out of bitterness and what I thought was necessity. I’m not just talking about giving money; I’m talking about time, things, energy, etc. I even gave up some of my personality because I thought I had to act/perform in a certain way.
2011 was my biggest breaking point. I had been a manager for 5 years. In that 5 years there were tremendous changes at my work place and in my family. But they weren’t all good changes. I ended up giving all my energy and time to work in hopes that I would make my family better. I did this in bitterness and tried to do it in my own strength but there was no love. I gave money freely to those who needed it, but not in love. I gave my time and attention to my husband, but not with love. This caused my life to spiral out of control. I was ready to end it all.
After many months of going to emotional healing, I found love. I found out all my giving was done in bitterness and hate because “I had to”. But there was no love. Then I realized…God is Love. I didn’t honor Him at all in all that giving. I was honoring myself, being prideful in my giving. No love. Not only did I find love, but my husband joined me on this journey. We found true love again. My kids started to change, not without some struggles, but it was pretty miraculous if you had been around any us in the past, you would see the difference.
I say all this to say, without love, nothing matters. I struggle daily to do things in my own power. But I need God, I need love, I need Him always. And when God is put at the forefront you’ll have love. When there’s Love there’s peace. When there’s peace, then the positive changes can occur.
My prayer for myself, my family and others is that love is seen and love is given. I do not want to give in my own strength but I want to give in His perfect, healing, saving LOVE!!!
Youth Ministry Leader