What a Christmas this has been! There has been stress and tension, family drama, and financial concerns. But most of all, I have been reminded of how Mary reacted to the shepherds when they came to Bethlehem and spread the word of all that the Angel had told them about the baby Jesus. Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart. Luke 2:19. As a father, I treasure the memories and shared moments of Good Love, I remember them, enjoy the ones from this season this year, and I ponder them. As I ponder them, I weigh them, or compare the new with what has taken place in the past, I reflect on them.
A few weeks ago I talked about encouragement being a way to turn Good Love into Better Love, and how it fills the sails of the other person. Well, I have had my sails filled this Christmas. One of my kids told me that they feel we have recently gotten closer than they ever thought possible, that they realize how lucky they are to have such a great Dad, and that they are continuing to learn what a big heart I have, and that I have gone above and beyond for all four of my kids. What a blessing to be told that.
When I made my Christmas list to send to family, what I said I wanted from each of the four kids was a lunch or dinner together, for us to go on a date together like we did when they were little and we were living in Spain. So I have been doing that, as well as sharing meals with other family and friends, and even sharing in emails with friends in Spain. And its been wonderful, with many shared moments to ponder and remember. All these things I treasure. Someone once said that life is not measured by the number of breaths you take, but by the moments that take your breath away. And I have found that having your sails filled and sharing treasured moments do indeed take your breath away, and even moisten your eyes.
Just as Mary treasured and pondered those things in her heart, we are told For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Luke 12:34 and Matt 6:21. But where is our treasure? Of course, it is where we spend our money, but it is also where we spend our even more valuable resources. That is, our treasure is also where we spend our time, and where we share our heart, share our Good and Better Love – that is where our heart will be. It helps me sometimes to ask myself, am I just existing? Am I just letting the time, the money, the Good/Better Love pass by? Or will I make a conscious decision where, when, and with who I will share with? Do I share my heart and my encouragement enough with the others who are important in my life? Is there a way I can return to my parents some of the treasures they showered on me?
One of my favorite books of the Bible is Proverbs. And Prov 11:25 comes to mind: A generous man will prosper, he who refreshes (waters) others will himself be refreshed (watered). In other words, someone who is generous with Good Love will prosper. Someone who encourages others, who shares their heart and Good Love with others, will themselves receive Good Love from the hearts of others.
And since I’ve enjoyed sharing some photos in the last several posts, here is one of a medallion, showing a woman holding a heart, in the process of giving her heart to a man down before her, hand outstretched. On the back of the medallion, it says in French, (he) who gives his heart will be rich. Please, do be rich.