by Tim Sisarich
Love is such an interesting concept, especially for us guys. Too often we figure that if we get the jobs done that we’re supposed to get done, that is love. I have travelled the world talking to men and women about family and relationships, and everywhere I’ve gone, I’ve heard one version or another of the following statement: Hey – I said it at the altar, and I’m still here, babe. So, what more do you want from me?
But love needs fuel to thrive. When we don’t express love to others in a way they can absorb it, then we don’t fill up their tank and they’re left feeling empty. This emptiness begins to suck the life from their heart. It’s why, when Jesus was asked about the greatest commandment, He said all the law and prophets were summed up in loving God and loving others as much as we love ourselves.
Love really is Christianity in action. And our homes are the greenhouse for that love to grow and develop.
Unfortunately, I had my own reality check with this concept just the other night. I arrived home from work later than usual, and I was whacked. I didn’t say much, apart from the obligatory, “Hey, honey,” followed by a welcome-home kiss.
My wife, Jesmae, then told me about how she’d had another full-on day. (Caring for five young kids does that to you!) But she knew I had plans, so she had dinner ready in time for me to rush back out for a game of squash with a buddy.
When I got back home, I didn’t take the time to let her know how grateful I was for everything she’d done for me during the day. Instead, I went straight into the office to get some late night writing done. What a missed opportunity!
It wasn’t until I sat down the next day, reading through Philippians 2, that it dawned on me how I’d seriously missed the boat on this one! Jesmae had given so much time and energy to show me love in ways she knew would fill up my tank. But I’d missed Paul’s encouragement in Philippians to forget about myself long enough to let her know how much I love and value her.
Those were the words, by the way, on the note that I stuck on the kitchen counter for her as I left the house that morning.
Lord, we love you because You first loved us. Open our eyes to the heights and depths of Your love, so that we may learn to love one another in the same way. Make us imitators of You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Learn more about God’s irreplaceable design in The Family Project® – a 12-session DVD curriculum that explores why God’s plan for families matters today. Take your small group on a life-changing journey to strengthen and encourage families! Get The Family Project® curriculum today.
Tim Sisarich is a storyteller, presenter and author. He directed Focus on the Family’s documentary film, Irreplaceable, and is the host of The Family Project®.