We love like we have been loved

We love like we have been loved

Recently,I got to sit around and reminisce with our oldest son about past Christmases he had with his Grandma Lewis. (my momma) He reminded me that she showed up one year in her car completely packed from front to back, top to bottom, with Christmas presents and only enough room for her to sit in the driver’s seat with her little head of her barely 5 ft frame peeping over the steering wheel. This was the perfect example of a Christmas with my mom or any holiday truthfully,  and for no reason that I can comprehend, Lee accused his father and I of being worst with his kids. Just because we always bring his kids something when we come to visit or send presents on holidays when we can’t be there. As I explained to my daughter-in-love. We love those kids like we have been loved. It can be as something as silly as a bag of apples and oranges that Jeff will bring in a box and act as if it is something super special, lining the children all up and telling them to close their eyes because he has a prize for them. To the better gifts that the grandchildren say I know how to pick out. We all laugh and have a good time, just making them feel special.

 

I guess you could say gift giving was my family’s love language. I can’t even image only giving one gift a piece to my grand kids at Christmas. Now mind you, we don’t necessarily give big expensive gifts and I have even been know to buy good used toys for my grands and give them. I can remember my mom wrapping a 6 pack of sock by taking each pair out and wrapping it individually, just so it looked there were like a lot of gifts under the tree. My mom who lived on less than $700 a month in her retirement years, found so much joy in giving that she would find ways to make sure all 3 of us (at the time) would have tons of gifts under the tree. Not that buying presents is the only way to show love, but it is and outward sign of an inward feeling for my family. My parents who raised me, showed me such unconditional love when they took me in as a newborn and raised me as I was their own. I know without a doubt they would of given their lives for me.

 

I was talking this past week to a friend who had, a negative experience in love. She was previously in an abusive relationship and now that she has found new love she was scared to take the next step. She told me,” If you have never felt a love like that than it is hard to realize you can be loved in that way.”

 

That really got me thinking, in this world where New York just approved to legalize abortion up to the day of birth, made me ask “What are people so scared of? As parents, our jobs are not easy it can be a scary thing raising a child and being solely responsible for it.  Especially if you have never really been loved. We live in a society where the traditional roles have been shattered and whether you agree with it or not you have to say that it has only made people more confused about their place in relationships are. Perhaps that is why marriage seems to becoming more and more extinct. People are afraid to commit to marriage and we have to ask the question why? Are they afraid to love because they have never really been loved?

 

Marriage is a covenant between two people before God committing their love to one another forever and the wise ones who make that covenant know it can’t be done without God’s help. Many who make that covenant these days know they need to love like the way they have been loved. With an unconditional love that the father above has given them. It is only when we accept that love and trust in the Heavenly Father that we can really love like we are suppose to love. Jeff Miller knows me, He knows every part about me, the good, the bad and they ugly,  and he still loves me. So when I get upset with Jeff, I have to remember how much he has put up with from me.

 

If we will all just be honest with ourselves, none of us are perfect but yet we have the God who created the universe who wants to be part of our life. Yet, we can’t grasp that kind of love. We can’t grasp the idea of God not expecting perfection but, He is simply looking for surrender. As a child it wasn’t uncommon that under the Christmas tree each year it would be full of gifts. Jeff and I did the same with our children and now with our grands. We simply are showing the love that we received. I hope today, you realize there is a man who hung on a tree and gave His life for you. Because He loves you. How about today we love Him with unconditional love too. How about we surrender our life to Him and share the amazing love He has given us with others.

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Oklahoma Teachers Walk out for Love or Money?

Oklahoma Teachers Walk out for Love or Money?

This past week Oklahoma Teachers walked out of their class rooms. Why? Well if you asked the news companies reporting on this issue and even most of the Teachers and Legislators, they would probably all give the answer that it is for more pay, it’s for better schools and better supplies for their students. But I have a different view of the whole thing. So hear me out…..

Last week we were in Oklahoma, and as we were driving home we were listening to the radio. I heard the story of several teachers and principals who even though they were not in school they are going into the communities that their kids come from and passing out meals to those kids because they didn’t want them to go hungry. I must tell you that broke my heart and as I sat in my car and cried the vision of seeing Americans pass out food to the hungry orphan children in impoverished countries passed before my eyes.  It was if the Lord spoke to me and said the United States is spiritually impoverished. It broke my heart that America has come to this.

We are a spiritually impoverished country because we have forgotten the value of human life. Unfortunately, for many children that are not aborted before they are born, they are aborted in a sense after they are born. Why? Because parents do not know how to parent, and why is that? Because many times they had no examples.

If you have been around me any length of time you have heard me say “If satan can destroy the family, then he can destroy the church, and if he can destroy the church than he can destroy the nation.” Well, look around.

My heart goes out to school teachers across the country because in their laps everyday are being dropped the responsibilities that parents should be taking. From disciple, to hygiene, to providing meals and basic needs for education and survival. Too many parents are dropping the ball in general nurturing lessons. Somewhere along the way, we now have a generation of parents where many thinks that their children are just a commodity, a result of a moment of pleasure. A cute little thing to dress up, until they get annoying or to costly, then that parent gets overwhelmed and often discards them in one form or another.

If the human life were more valuable, than the Legislatures would value the education of our kids more and find the money needed, if human life was valuable and we didn’t live in a selfish world then the school districts would allocate more of the money they get from the state to the education and not to their own pocketbooks. If human life was more valuable, parents would realize they are raising warriors for Christ, they would remember what the Psalms says “Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth.” Somewhere along the way, we forgot or rejected the fact that we were all created to be warriors for Christ and we all are just raising little warriors for Him. But the value of life is just part of the sin that has seeped into this world.

No one blinks twice that we have people living together that aren’t married or having children out of marriage. It has become common place that if we get tired of our spouse we just divorce (if we were married to begin with) or go sleep with someone else and why?? Because “We’re not Happy” and we “Deserve to be Happy”.  All the while God told us “You shall not commit adultery. Exodus 20:14 This self-center attitude is exactly what leads us to deeper and deeper sin.

See there is a reason God said that having sex before marriage is wrong, it’s because it leads to unexpected pregnancies which often leads to single mothers, which often leads to poverty. Some of you may be appalled I would say such a thing but let me ask some questions. If that isn’t the case than why does http://www.nokidgoeshungry.com report that over 13 million children in the US live in “food insecure homes”? Well you say, that isn’t the parents fault it is poverty that have put them in these situations. Isn’t it? Does poverty just happen or is it a result of someone’s choices that over time often snow balls and therefore many times effect generations to come?  I don’t think it is a coincidence that Wikipedia reports that there are 13.6 million single parent homes. And why is there so many single parent homes? Is it because we are having sex before we are married, getting pregnant unexpectedly or is it the 50% divorce rate? These facts combined with the knowledge that young girls who grow up without an active father figure in their life are more apt to get pregnant before marriage than those with fathers in the home.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not saying stay in a marriage if there is real physical and emotional abuse.  I believe we serve a big God that stands without stretched arms ready to forgive and love those who make mistakes. But what concerns me is we don’t even look at any of this as sin any more. It used to be a couple of kids would have a passionate moment in the back of a car somewhere and it would go too far and she would end up pregnant. But today, we have parents letting kids who are not married sleep together right in their homes, or adults who choose to live together or just sleep around. It is no longer a “Oops baby!” but it is intentional acts of sin. It has become so common, that now we are exploring new sexual immorality. Past Homosexuality, we now have Poly-amorous relationships that are becoming acceptable, and that’s when there is more than 2 partners having relationships with each other all in the same home and same bed.

And who is to blame for all of this, well besides satan himself, I would have to say the church is. For far to long, we rejected people who weren’t exactly like us. We rejected young girls who made a mistake and forced them out of the church walls instead of coming alongside them and loving them the way Christ would. We forced them because of the pressure of being perfect before man’s eyes, to go and have abortions.  For to long it was easier to get forgiveness from God for an abortion than it was to bring an unwed mother and her child to church.  Make no mistake I am not talking about the institution itself, I am talking about the people sitting in the pews that make up the church. It was the same with anyone divorced they were outcast. More often than not, the old ladies in the church whispered behind their backs in the grocery stores or the leaders of the church asked them not to come back. To many times, we sit up on our high horse looking down on others because we have forgotten what we have been forgiven of, and we forget that God’s Word say’s, “If we can’t forgive other’s there is not forgiveness for us” Matt 6:15

You may be asking, yeah but Alesa what does any of this have to do with the Oklahoma teachers walk out? See, I have a different perspective about why teachers walked out in Oklahoma. I say it is because sin is on such a rampage in this country and has been for many years now. That our country is like the old story of the Frog in the pot of boiling water. The US is that frog in boiling water. You see, you can’t cook a live frog if you just throw him in a pot of hot water, because it will jump out. But you can slowly cook a frog if you put it in cool water and slowly turn up the heat. Unfortunately, Our Teachers are having to pick up the pieces left behind in this sin rampaged world. The heat that has been turned up on high and the pot is starting to boil now.

I have great compassion for our teachers they carry a heavy burden, they are on the front lines of seeing how sin has rampage this country and they deserve our greatest support. They are having to do what the parents and the church were created to do. So, what is our responsibility in all this? Well, if you think sitting here in our sweet little town in Kansas you are immune from this, you have bought into a bigger lie than all the others put together. Satan wants us to become complacent and content, so he can sneak his way in and when he does, we are either those committing the sin or the ones looking down on those that do. Which one are you? I say choose a different road and love like Christ loves, ask Him to help you to see others as He sees them. It is only then that we will change the world, sin will never stop until we get to heaven. But we can make the world a better place, and we can bring more people to His saving grace if we will love them.  No matter what the differences are, or the sin that they may have committed because we are all sinners just saved by grace. We are all valuable to Christ. Let’s not just pray for our teachers but let’s, try to start right where you are making this world a better place. Because, money in never going to solve the real problem, only Christ’s love can.