“I can change any one’s eating habits,” a friend declared.
Hmmm, I thought to myself, I’m not so sure…
“After all,” she continued, “Myron didn’t even eat vegetables when you got married, and now look at him!”
It’s true. Myron’s idea of a salad used to be iceberg lettuce slathered in dressing and buried in cheese. Now he prefers romaine and spinach with a variety of veggies and proteins.*
I pondered my friends comment and thought back to the last year.
Nursing a dairy and soy-intolerant baby forced me into a diet of unprocessed, whole foods. I really learned to cook as I could no longer warm-up prepared foods. In this process Myron and I discovered our new healthy diet tasted delicious and helped us feel great.
Did I change his eating habits? No, I realized, I just learned how to cook!
Do Good Personally – Make salad a main dish for at least one meal in the next week. If this doesn’t sound filling, creatively add proteins, vegetables and a slice of bread on the side.*
I wondered more deeply, is it really possible to change anyone? A simple thought emerged: We don’t change any one’s mind or heart, we just learn how to love.
Saint Paul said we could be the most thrilling, eloquent speaker or a spectacular miracle-worker or even the most generous person in history, but if we don’t love it won’t mean anything! “So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.” (I Corinthians 13:1-7)
Am I motivated by love in all the encouraging words I say, things I do and even the sacrifices I make for others? Or, am I simply acting out of my own need to matter in this world? What is this kind of love truly infuses meaning into life?
I used to be completely compelled by my own longing to be significant. At a time in my life when I was so broken that I could not be anything but shattered, God gently showed me His love. He lifted up my weary head and showed my teary eyes the cross of Jesus Christ in a whole new light – “You matter.”
God is love. His love brings meaning, purpose, and even change into our lives.
Do Good – Pick a truth about love below. Meditate on it and ask God how He wants you to specifically change your thinking and behavior. Pray believing that you will learn to really love.
Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
Love doesn’t strut,
Doesn’t have a swelled head,
Doesn’t force itself on others,
Isn’t always “me first,”
Doesn’t fly off the handle,
Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.
A diet soda and crispy chicken sandwich used to be my healthy alternative at a restaurant. Are you substituting empty, false human love for the real thing from God? I pray that we can all learn to love. With that, there will be no stopping us from being Up To Know Good!
God, thank You that You are love. Help us to believe and learn so we may change and help our hurting world.
*Myron’s Spectacular Salad
Finely sliced green onion
Craisins and/or raisins
Freshly shredded Colby and/or Monterey Jack (or whatever cheese you love)
Sprinkle with fresh ground pepper
Favorite dressings: Paul Newman’s Vinaigrette or Annie’s Cowgirl Ranch