“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.”
Before we start, let me warn you. This is not for the faint of heart. This series will take a 40 day commitment, but if you are willing to take it, I trust that you will see a change. Remember, you cannot change another person’s heart, only God can. Throughout this journey, pray daily, maybe even hourly for the person you love. Pray that they may see God reflected in you and that his/her heart may be changed. This Love Dare is not only to meant to restore relationships; it is meant to show you how much God loves you and for you to find love or deepen your love for Jesus.
Hmm. Patience. That one is sometimes reallly tough for me. How about you? When I’m running around trying to do everything (knowing full well that will never happen!), settling disagreements between my two children, tackling the never-ending laundry basket, attempting to pay bills, be an awesome homeschool teacher and maybe, just maybe figure out what to make for dinner, patient is the last word that anyone would use to describe me! By the time my husband gets home from an equally crazy day at work, how patient am I? How many times has he returned home to find a wife who is super happy to see him, all put together, not a care in the world, patient woman? In our house, it’s more often that he finds a frazzled, impatient wife who is ready to pounce on the first wrong (or perceived wrong) thing he says. Deep down I know that is not me or how God intends me to be. So why am I like that? What would it take for me to be the kind of person that God knows I am?
One thing. Jesus.
But I already love Jesus. I know I am nothing without Him. So what am I doing wrong?
Oh, you mean I have to read my Bible? Daily. When I’m happy. When I’m stressed. When I’m tired. The answers are all there.
In order to fully experience love the way God intended, I have to take this idea of patience and let it seep in. Kind of like when I water my plants. I need to be in God’s word for it to seep into the soil (my heart) and reach the roots (my soul). it is only then that I will experience love that is in full bloom. The way God intended.
But you’re saying, ‘What does that have to do with patience?”
We need to make sure that we are in God’s word, studying and praying on any verses that God uses to teach us about patience. We need to read about how patient Jesus was and is. Then, we need to put it into action.
So, are you ready for Dare 1?
The first part of this dare is fairly simple. Although love is communicated in a number of ways, our words often reflect the condition of our heart. For the next day, resolve to demonstrate patience and to say nothing negative to your spouse at all. If the temptation arises, choose to not say anything. It’s better to hold your tongue than to say something you’ll regret.
At the end of the day, take out a notebook, piece of paper or print this page out and answer these two questions.
1. Did anything happen today to cause anger toward your mate?
2. Were you tempted to think disapproving thoughts and to let them come out in words?
Once you have finished that, congratulations! You have completed Day 1 of The Love Dare!
This series is meant for you. It is between you and God. I do not need to know any details or even that you did it, but if you want to share how you feel or how this series is going, I would be blessed to hear it!
Get ready. Tomorrow gets tougher… Day 2