To Love That Much
When I was a young father struggling to get by I worked for a while in a lumber mill. It was hard, back-breaking work for little money. In the two years I worked there the job turnover rate was so high that only 4 of the people I started with were still there in the end. I did my best to make it through each day. I lived in my imagination and sang songs in my mind while my hurting body bent, lifted, and carried the heavy lumber over and over again.
One summer day I came home from work covered in sweat and sawdust. My back ached, my feet hurt, and my entire spirit felt drained and depressed. My wife brought me dinner on a TV tray, but I was too tired to eat, too tired to shower, and even too tired to watch TV. I just lay on the couch wondering how much longer I would be able to go on at this job that was weakening my body, hurting my heart, and eating away at my soul.
I glanced out the living room window and saw my young children playing outside. They were swinging on an old swing set, chasing each other around the yard, and laughing with such joy. I kept watching them while my eyes misted over. I could feel my heart beating with love for them. I knew in that moment that I would give my life for them. And I also knew that I could continue on in this job for them, no matter how hard the work or how long I had to be there. With tears in my eyes I thanked God for giving me them and promised to love them, care for them, and be there for them forever.
Thankfully, I didn’t have to stay at that job for much longer, but that moment did stay with me to this day. I think maybe one of the reasons God puts us in this difficult, often painful world is so we can learn to Love that much. Love conquers every fear, heals every hurt, and helps us become who we were meant to be. Love makes us more and more like the One who made us. May all your days no matter how difficult be filled with love then. May you spend them all loving God, yourself, and everyone else.
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