Friday, October 13, 2006

Unconditional Love

Some of the best ideas and thoughts I have are usually right before I sleep. I would lie in my bed try to relax. But the brain keeps running. As you can imagine, sometimes it can take me a long time to actually fall sleep (especially when I am not dead tired from training). I need to find that on/off switch to my brain.

I do my daily devotion before I go to bed. I am reading through the Old Testaments. I started with Samuel because I am interested in learning about David. David and Goliath. Treason, war, betrayla.... How can you go wrong with that?

Then I read Kings, Chronicles, Ezra and now, Nehemiah.

Last night I read Nehemiah, Chapter 9. The Israelites are going back to Jerusulam to rebuild the walls. Before God let the Babylons defeated them and lay the city to ruins. In this chapter, the Israelites are praising the God for the love that He has given to them. First, He led them out of Egypt. Then when they were settled down, they turned their back on God. When enemies were on them, they went back to God and God helped them out. Then they became stiff necked and arrogant. Then another enemy attack and they run back to God. Again and again.

How amazing is that to have a God with such unconditional love that he can forgive. If I am God, I would have just squish them. Rebel once, fine. Rebel second times, ok. Rebel third time, squish.

Can I share the unconditional love that God had given me to the ones I care about?
Can I accept them for who they are without judgement or critcisim?

I reflect on some of the closest friends I have, they have accepted me for who I am (loud talking, insensitive and at times cocky). Could I accept them otherwise?

I reflect on myself as a Christian. Can I share this unconditional love to others? Compare to God and His Love, what I can offer is very little. Can I still share even this little bit?

There is a number of couples getting marry in my Fellowship. When it is my turn, would I be able to accept the significant other as who she is, as God made her?


Tri related..I haven't bike or swim or run this week. I only ran 15 k last Sun. I missed it. By late Oct, I will refocus and plan my next season. for now, just relax and de-tri. I want to come to the next season with a bang.


Anonymous said...

Great post and reflection. I am good with being accepting, but struggle with focusing on God to guide me through my life. I often, or most of the time try to go my own way and then come back to God explaining what an idiot I've been. Not that I stray from believing in God, but I start thinking that I can do things my way and that it will be ok if I do things my way. I am not sure when I will learn, but thank God for forgiveness, acceptance, and grace.

Sarah Lukas said...

I really hope things are going much better for you, and God bless you in this time and always. Just keeping the love there and alive can keep us moving on.

Habeela said...

You always ask such good questions. Enjoy your off-season. Next year will definitely include a big bang...I think it's labeled IM.

Lora said...

Loved this post. I've always believed that if you continue to ask the questions, the answers you need will come. It's those that don't ask that one worries about.

How's Grandma?

The Stretch Doc said...

Great post. Peace my brother in Christ.

Robin said...

I strive to give unconditioanl love. Funny, I was thinking about this subject in relation to my best friend the other day.

I enjoy your posts, Cliff!

Rachel said...

I think it's great you're taking this time to rest and reflect. I totally agree about leading a balanced life.

Boris' Dad said...

um, don't you have to keep it up to ensure that you will be a bang for next season?

Tri-Dummy said...

I'm currently studying Nehemiah myself. It's a great book on leadership. I'm using a commentary...I'll email you the title when I get home. Drop your email on my blog or email's listed in my profile.

An interesting thing to think about concerning how God dealt with His people in the Old Testament was "patience." God was very patient with the Israelites. Prior to entering the Promised Land, think about how many "extra laps" they took in the desert. 40 years of them!!! The false idols and gods. The discontentment with mana and quail. Or Moses and Aaron not being allowed to enter themselves for disobedience. Yet, God was always faithful and forgiving...I believe it showed His amazing patience.

Patience. What a way to show your unconditional love ...a fruit of the Spirit.

Jay aka: Tri-dummy

Kewl Nitrox said...

Good post! It's great that you are having such deep thoughts - we seem to be alike in that we sometimes think too much when it is time to sleep. :)

I think unconditional love is only achievable amongst us mere mortals when we are so filled with God's love (and the awareness of His love) that it over-flows from our hearts naturally. When I try to do so at my own effort, I fail miserably.

I have been de-tri'ing too. Mostly due to the haze, thanks to the forest burning in Malaysia. A rather sad situation. :(

qcmier said...

Great thoughts. Thanks for this post.