by Brianna Barrett
Artist: Ana Lico
“Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. Our actions will show that we belong to the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before God.” 1 John 3:18-19
Technology fails me. Social Media fails me. People fail me. But God doesn’t. I’ve been in a hard season where there is a lot of healing and brokenness, and being stretched beyond measure. A season of heartache and loss that taught me a lot. I always knew that people would fail me, but I think I’ve experienced that so much I don’t know how much more I can take.
Not only in this season of healing and loss, I’m growing closer to God.
Maybe this is His way of showing me where I need to be instead of where I want to be. Have you ever been going through a season of healing when you needed others around physically and mentally, but found yourself alone yet again? Each time you think you are making progress you just seem to be knocked down again.
I had great expectations for this season, oh what a time to be loved on and feel appreciated. Yet, to be let down and feel more alone than ever before. The past two years have shown me that I need people in my life, yet I hold people to a higher standard than I should. I’ve grown to find that the closer people are to me, the higher the standard I hold for them. As a parent, I hold my children to high standards. But that is a disservice to them, they will fail me and I will fail them. We aren’t perfect, we are not Jesus.
I really thought this was going to be a time of reconciliation too. Oh, how I’ve prayed for that for 17 years. One day there will be no more pain, discord, or strife. One day. I believe that wholeheartedly. Why do I set myself up for failure too? I know that the people in my life can’t possibly live up to this, or fill the void that I’m longing to fill. That my friend is where our good, good Father comes in. He can fill that void. He won’t fail you. He will always be there for you. He is there for you. He has chosen you to be His child. He is for you, even when the whole world is against you.
In spite of that, I am in a great deal of pain, both in my heart, body, and emotions. I thought there would be visits, cards, flowers, and friends. Those expectations were crushed. Friends fail us. Family fails us. But God doesn’t. God shows up in the middle of the storms, and grief, and holds us. He showed up when Martha and Mary needed him as they were mourning the loss of their brother Lazarus. Did He show up when the well-meaning sisters thought he should? No, but He was there. Not only did He show up, but He performed a miracle, raising a man from the dead! (John 11).
There is truth in actions. If you want someone to feel loved, show them! You can say it 100 times but showing someone love changes it. They see it and feel it. The Word tells us in 1 John 3:18 – 19 in the New Living Translation, “dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. Our actions will show that we belong to the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before God.” Show up and show the people in your life Jesus’ love for them. Send the card, make the phone call, and show up on their doorstep with a smile on your face. We all live busy lives, but when we take the time out of our day to love others, intentionally love others we are living out what God has called us to do.
In 1 Thessalonians 5:11, Paul writes, “so encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.” Show up for the ball game, the school play, and the dance recital, and show them your love for them. Even when people fail us, let us not fail others. Even when people fail us, God won’t fail us. He is for us and He loves us. May we go out into the world to spread the love of Christ to others. Heavenly Father, thank You for never leaving me, never forsaking me, for always loving me even when I deem myself un-loveable.
Thank You for Your grace and forgiveness and most importantly for Your Son that died for my sins. May You grant me the strength to spread Your loving kindness to the world, even when it doesn’t return it to me. I pray for the healing of the wounds that keep me from loving others and stepping out in faith. Thank You, Lord. In Jesus’ name