Let’s begin today’s post with a song that’s been on my heart for days now…at least since I’ve been sharing on LOVE.. it really is what the world needs now….more than ever before! http://youtu.be/PbXsZlPbN90
Continuing my series on pursuing excellence and how it relates to both personal growth that leads to professional success, I shared last Tuesday on the idea of “loving lavishly”. I hope you took the time to think about ways you can exercise that opportunity; if not, it’s not too late. The topic of “love” is probably the most talked-about topic ever but not necessarily in the vein that I’m talking about here. Rather, it’s the real, authentic, unconditional kind that needs to be manifested when faced with the “unlovely” stuff of the world we live in today.
Let me take you back to what many would call the best description of love…ever! It comes from the New Testament where the Apostle Paul is writing to the church in Corinth…and I love how he begins the 13th chapter of the first book of Corinthians by saying, “And now I will show you a more excellent way”! He goes on to say in verses 4 through 8, this about true agape love… “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking. It is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”
Now this is the Chapter in the Bible that is typically read at weddings and we’ve all heard it recited many times over at those joyous occasions. But let’s talk about when the “rubber really meets the road”! Those times when you’ve been frustrated with your spouse, had a run-in with your boss or co-worker or perhaps it was even a close friend from your church you thought you could trust and they end up betraying that trust.”
It’s in those times when that “more excellent way” is challenged and stretched. I never said it was going to be easy to “love lavishly”…especially given the issues we as humans deal with on a daily basis when it comes to growing healthy relationships. I will submit to you that God oftentimes allows situations to arise where we are stretched to the max to love one another. You may recall from Tuesday’s post that is, after all, the greatest commandment. First, to love the Lord your God with all that is within you…and then, your neighbor as yourselves.
But wait…what if we have an issue with loving ourselves! How can we love and accept others with all of their flaws and inconsistencies if we’re our own worst critic? We, as human beings, have two basic needs—love and acceptance—it’s a proven fact. I’m asking you to meditate on this…let it really marinate in your soul and ask yourself the question…”Do I really love and accept myself where I am right now?” I know that may be a tough thing to think about but I know it will make a huge difference in your life and how you relate to everyone else. It’s about living an authentic life of excellence…and it all begins with love.
Jana Denninger, Neighborhood Development
A Women’s Place Network, Inc. dba
Affiliated Women International
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