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He Lives and He Loves

Write My Faith

The mission of The Faith Collective is not only to share stories of faith to inspire, but also to encourage others to write their own stories. By contemplating and writing our own experiences of faith it can help strengthen our testimony and inspire others – now and in generations to come. Follow along with each series as we share free writing prompts and images to help you uncover your own story.

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HE LIVES AND HE LOVES

The Faith Collective

“No tomb could contain what love was about to release.” -Bob Goff

Faith that He lives and that He loves. Isn’t that the root of everything? If He didn’t die for us, If He didn’t rise for us, if He didn’t sacrifice every bit of blood and flesh and heart for us, then would any of this really matter?

“I know that my Redeemer lives, What comfort this sweet sentence gives! He lives, he lives, who once was dead. He lives, my ever living Head. He lives to bless me with his love. He lives to plead for me above. He lives, my hungry soul to feed. He lives to bless in time of need.” –Samuel Medley

I’ve heard this hymn my whole life, and each time the powerful melody fills whatever congregation I’m standing in. I feel an overwhelming confidence that the words are true. Christ lives and He loves me. Regardless of anything else I might be struggling with, Christ lives, and He loves me.

Life has its share of some fear and some failure. Sometimes things fall short, don’t quite measure up. Sometimes in both personal and public life, we are seemingly left without strength to go on. Sometimes people fail us, or economies and circumstance fail us, and life with its hardship and heartache can leave us feeling very alone.

But when such difficult moments come to us … there is one thing which will never, ever fail us. One thing alone will stand the test of all time, of all tribulation, all trouble, and all transgression. One thing only never faileth—and that is the pure love of Christ.” – Jeffrey Holland

When I think of the pain, sorrow, agony that Jesus Christ, my brother, experienced both in the Garden of Gethsemane and on the cross I see a boundless love. I see a love whose strength is beyond measure, beyond judgement, beyond any earthly limits.

If he had enough love to overcome ALL sin and ALL evil this world has, then we can lean on that love, even take a portion of that love to smile to our neighbor, to forgive those who wrong us, to drive our relationships with both loved ones and strangers.

That love, the love of our brother and of our Father makes the world a better place. That love is all around us. That love was there when an elderly gentlemen, seeing a mom struggling to wrangle a toddler and a baby through the airport with two pieces of luggage, insisted he carry her duffle bag. That love was there when you brought a quick dinner to a neighbor or when you received a phone call on a rough day. It was also there when you made a mistake and His love was there when your heart felt broken and it will be there as the binding force when one day your heart heals again.

“Though we are incomplete, God loves us completely. Though we are imperfect, He loves us perfectly. Though we may feel lost and without compass, God’s love encompasses us completely … What this means is that, regardless of our current state, there is hope for us. No matter our distress, no matter our sorrow, no matter our mistakes, our infinitely compassionate Heavenly Father desires that we draw near to Him so that He can draw near to us.” – Dieter Uchtdorf

He lives for us so that we can live. He loves for us so that we can love.  He overcame sin and heartache and trials and difficulties so that we can too.  He overcame the world so that we can too. Because of the pure love of Christ, we can too.

We can too.

How Has His Love Affected My Daily Life?

 

 

Excerpt from a journal entry by Natalie Gessel

Please just let them be kind. Just let them be successful. Just let them eventually want to eat more than peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Just let them be happy.

I want so much for my babies. But I mostly just want them to be happy and not hurt others.

Today is my fifth Mother’s Day.

On my first Mother’s Day, I was the victim of a neon green poop geyser, Arizona-heat car-nursing session, and a no nap monster.

On my second Mother’s Day, I was told to have zero expectations by pretty much all moms- a gem of advice that I happily passed on to several newer-than-me mothers. So, on my third and fourth Mother’s Days, I had zero expectations.

But this week, as I’ve been gearing up for my fifth Mother’s Day, I am quite sure we’ve had it all wrong. Or at least I have had it all wrong for me.

Wynn and Conrad already fight. They are 4 and 18 months, and they already hit, yell, and get offended by each other. For awhile now I’ve felt like I’ve been failing them. I must be failing them. Nothing else could explain it.

Conrad has had a massive sliver in his hand for the last 2 weeks. We’ve been watching it, hoping it would make its way out, but unfortunately, we decided last night that we needed to operate. I tried to get it out while Andrew held him down- too much movement. Andrew tried to get it out while I held him tight- too much movement.

We enlisted Wynn.

“Wynn Baby, I need you to hold mama’s phone and show Buggy all those animals that he loves on this app. Make sure to hold it so he can see it!”

“OK!” she responded with the highest level of enthusiasm that only a 4 year old would.

What followed can only be described as perfection. My heart began to open up and understanding, peace and love poured into my soul, as I watch Wynn distract, encourage, and beautifully ease her baby brother’s discomfort.

“Conrad! Look a stick bug!”

“Conrad! Look a frog!”

“Conrad! Look your favorite! A flamingo!”

Wynn talks really loud, always. And Conrad doesn’t particularly care for flamingos.

This Mother’s Day I was given the gift of my tiny family and my tiny people rallying together to help one of our own. My sweet Wynn forgot about how angry she had been at Conrad just an hour earlier for stealing her beloved brachiosaurus, and she came to help him because he needed her. He loves her. She loves him.

This Mother’s Day, my fifth Mother’s Day, is not about zero expectations and my kids doing things for me, but don’t get me wrong I would never say no to a good hair-braid or home-made card! But this Mother’s Day is about me celebrating my motherhood and these little imperfectly perfect hooligans I have the honor of showing the beauties of this life to. It’s about how I get the best witness of Jesus Christ’s love everyday through these two. He lives in my babies. They are always making mistakes, and I get to show them that His life ministry was to help them fix those mistakes and to help them love.

If I show them that, I’m not failing them.