Discovering what love is one day at a time
Outside in or inside out…. Ever get up in the morning and in the dark put your shirt or sweatshirt on inside out? And not realize it until someone points it out to you that your tag is showing? My littlest one does it a lot. But the best thing is that it doesn’t bother him…not in the least. It is not even on his radar. He knows that the clothes don’t make the man…but the heart of the man makes the man… He craves backwards days at school…or the PJ days that they have. He loves any excuse to deviate from the “norm.” He wears things that are color coordinated, but do not make sense fashionably according to current trends, for example, tan and blue plaid shorts, with tan camouflage shirt. He loves it and simply, it does not matter.
I love the hearts of my children. They look at things from an inside out perspective. They go to the heart of the matter most every time.
Truly, it is the heart of Father God. He looks at our hearts first, ALWAYS. He is not upset with our tags sticking out, or how it looks. Truly you get the gist of what I am saying. Our sin manifests itself in all sorts of ways…bad behavior, choices, words, actions…yada …yada.
His grace never does the pointy finger thing. He just starts talking to us on the inside. He allows our behavior to correct us. Like touching a hot stove…ouch…He warns us, but allows us to choose. And when we choose the opposite of what He desires for us, He is there to help us get back to His place of safety.
Certainly there are consequences and benefits respectively to each one.
I love the fact that we can just be who we are, and we do not have to make ourselves fit into a mold that looks like sounds like and feels like A.B. & C. to be followers of Jesus. We do not have to change things before we get to experience Him.
But Jesus said, ”Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” Matt 19:14
“Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it.” Luke 18:17
If you try and imagine this scene in the Bible, Jesus was talking to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and they despised others, and at the end of the story, they started to bring children to Him that He might touch them and when the disciples saw it they rebuked them.
Imagine further with me, these are little kids, infants, toddlers, and all ages. All maturity levels. What happens when adults gather together and there are kids. What does it look like? Sound like? What also is going on in the dynamics of the group…if more boys than girls? Even if the kids do not play well with each other? What about the adults? Don’t stop there go there in your imagination…hear it…feel it… Throw in a little dirt…
Natural tendencies want to kick in…maybe the need to control the group from the top down. Are your children there? What limitations are you going to put on your kids? Or are you going to give them choices IF there is truly a reason to intervene. If and when you intervene are you going to control them first, or look at why they are acting in a dishonoring way to the people around, and deal with that? Oh, and yes, check your heart. What is the thing that is nagging at you to do the pointy finger thing at someone else or their kids? When you really look, you will see that your tag is showing.
I think that sometimes, we can be so distracted by what it looks like, that we can fail to see what trying to change the outside first does to the heart of the one whose tag is showing. I also think that sometimes we do that to ourselves by saying I need to do this…and this and this and then I will be good….Change doesn’t start by forcing your body into submission. Change comes by yielding your inside to the One who will by the fruit of His Spirit shake off the things that need to be shaken. Seek first the kingdom of the Lord and His righteousness and all things will be added unto you. There is an order to the process, things tend to crumble and break, they don’t last as long as they would if the foundation was set properly.
How wonderful it is to serve a God that takes care of us as He does. No matter where you find yourself today, with a critical eye, or the object of someone else’s critical eye. Remember who really is in charge. He can handle both situations. He is gentle, and so loving. Let Him, direct you to the truth and heart of the matter, from the inside out
I have been married to my wonderful husband for 24 years. We have two young men ages 20 and 15.. This blog is somewhat of a journal and attempt for me to keep a purposeful perspective on life as a whole.