When Good Intentions are Not Enough

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On December 31st I sat down to write out my list of goals for 2014.  The night before as we were going to bed, I told Brian I was going to get up early and work on this list.  After a few minutes of talking through resolutions he said,

“In 2014 I want to Love God.”

Then he said, Have fun getting up early, rolled over and went to sleep.  Just like that. Simple.

“Simple” has never been my strong suit.  I am more of a pro and cons weigher/chart maker/list writer.  So the next morning I got up before the rest of the family, got my coffee, my notepad and pen and started my list.

I began with the traditional “better myself” type goals mainly because those are the resolutions you are supposed to make, right?  So after I got done with the read more, exercise regularly, and eat healthy stuff- I started to think about what this year held and what I wanted to be at the end of it.

After about 30 minutes of ideas of how to be a better wife, mom, sister, daughter, and friend, I wrote in big letters across the bottom of the page- LOVE PEOPLE. I guess what my husband came up with in a few minutes wasn’t such a bad idea after all.  A short phrase to focus on for the entire year instead of making things complicated.  But I still had my list to help with the specifics of how that was going to get done.

The next day I heard that the Bible app YouVersion was encouraging people to choose their verse for 2014.  I thought this was a great idea.  But again, where do you start?  So much of my life right now is about learning to have faith, to trust God even when the situation seems impossible.  So I thought for sure it would be something about that.  But as I read through some verses I had marked over the past year one stood out to me:

1 Peter 4:8 Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.

1 Peter 4.8

There it was.  Love People.  What I love about this verse is that it doesn’t just say be kind or help one another out.  It says to show DEEP love for each other.  Another version says it this way: keep loving one another earnestly.    This means sincerely.  It’s not just having a good intention, but being serious about it.

So I had it.  A nice phrase and a verse to go with it.  As my first act of “loving people”, Brooklyn and I got out the markers and stickers and made thank you notes for everyone who gave us Christmas gifts.  We had fun doing it and got all the cards done and addressed in an afternoon.

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Then we started packing to leave on the next trip.  Then we traveled for 2 days straight.  Then we were in a one room apartment for a weekend.  What does any of that have to do with thank you notes?  Nothing, except that I let it all distract me from actually getting stamps and mailing the cards.

One of the thank you cards was for my grandpa.  I didn’t have much of a relationship with him growing up and this year for the first time he sent a gift to my husband and me for Christmas.  I wanted to make sure he knew how much we appreciated the gift.

This week my grandpa passed away.  I still have his thank you card.

I know to some this sounds silly, but part of me still wanted to send the card.  I wanted to tell him we loved him and appreciated his generosity, even if he wouldn’t get the card.

I didn’t send the card.  Instead, I am keeping it as a reminder.  My sealed and addressed envelope is my reminder that life is short and good intentions don’t love people – ACTIONS LOVE PEOPLE.

love people pinable image

The next few posts I’m going to go more in depth with what loving people means to me.  But above all, in 2014 I am resolving to not just say I’m GOING to show love to people.  I am going to take the ACTION needed to show deep love.


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