Saturday, August 7, 2010

Steadfast Love

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23

Better is open rebuke than hidden love. Proverbs 27:5

Children need to be loved. And they need to know they're loved, unconditionally. Furthermore love needs to be expressed. When our children are not getting enough it shows. They misbehave towards us, towards their siblings, towards anyone close enough to be touched by them. Children cannot be over-loved. Men are responsive beings. They love in response to being loved. Children are just men not yet fully formed. It's from us that our children come to understand the love of God. And our love should imitate His. In fact, our love should be His loved passed through us. If our children develop the idea that they need to earn love, it will be because that's the kind of love they've experienced from us. The quality of God's love is shown throughout the Scriptures where it's outpouring, both from God to men and between men, is explained, encouraged and illustrated. It's expressed in patience, kindness, mercy, humility and many other ways which are apparent to it's recipient. It can't be hidden.

I believe our love also needs to be poured out in affection, in ways that are tangible to a child: hugging, kissing, holding on our laps, holding hands, may say, "that's not my disposition," but all you're really saying is that this type of expression feels uncomfortable to you. We need to be clear on something: this isn't about you. You'll get used to it with practice. If you withhold expressive love from your children, you've simply chosen to prefer yourself to your children.

Excerpted from Lawrence R. Lucas, The Things You'll See, pg. 34-35

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