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Let God Love You

Updated: Jun 24

 

“A mature love of ourselves is caring about our growth sufficiently that we do not flee from the discomfort or pain of our actual condition.  I must love myself enough not to abandon myself.”  (Enneagram teaching)


“We love because He first loved us.” I John 4

 

I remember the day it dawned on me that I didn’t really love people.  At least not in the way you would imagine a woman who was married for nearly 25 years at the time, raised 3 children and was a pastor’s wife should love.  I put a lot of pressure on myself to do good in hopes of loving people, working hard to find that “JOY” in life by serving Jesus, Others, Yourself…. as the acronym suggests. 

 

Oh, there certainly were days I offered love the best way I could, a behavior that was socially acceptable, and perhaps met an immediate need …..but the gesture was many times hurried, never enough for my ego, and left me feeling condemned.  I grew weary of even trying.  What was wrong with me?

 

Slowly, as more healthy spiritual formation practices began to renew my mind and heal my heart, I began to realize I held to an unconscious, misconstrued idea that sacrifice and love meant putting my questions, issues and desires on hold until others were pleased.  In fact, I didn’t even allow myself to “have issues” because that would not be “faith”. Yes, it was a miserable way to live.    

 

What I longed for was a lightness, an acceptance of life, of myself and others….and for the critical edge to be softened.  I slowly began to let God love me.  To sit with Him.  Not so to learn, nor to get the next assignment to obey, but to notice how love touched me. 

 

I heard a bird sing to me and felt His sweetness.   I relished my baby granddaughter smiling at me and felt my Creator smile back. I felt him enjoying my presence, felt His patient acceptance of all parts of me, even my shadows, judgements and fears.  


I was learning to treasure myself as my Peloton instructor encourages---  “Breathe like you love yourself.”


“What I let God see and accept in me, also becomes what I can then see and accept in myself, in my friends, and in everything else. This is “radical grace.” Once we allow it for ourselves, we will almost naturally become a conduit of the same for others.” (Richard Rohr)


What a surprise to discover that with this new awareness has come a softening, a slowing, an allowing of myself plenty of room to listen to myself.   And not run from what is really going on deep on the inside.   


This is a healthy love of self.   I am learning to be a good friend to myself…and friends are good to each other!


Being to practice this---



·       Listen to your inner conversations without judgement, offering warmth and extending grace to yourself.

·       Do not run or abandon yourself out of fear of what you will find, stay with yourself in the bonds of friendship.

·       Remember there are lost parts in even “found” sheep.  And the more we admit this reality, the more we feel God look at us with compassionate eyes.

 

Beth

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