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Anyway...

Recently a friend shared a portion of St. Mother Theresa’s poem “Love them Anyway” with me.  She shortened and condensed it to just the “anyway” lines.



God has been working on my heart to expand my use and understanding of ‘anyway’.  I decided to repeat these lines as prayer and quickly realized that I needed to include more ‘anyways’ in my version of St. Mother Theresa’s words to personalize my prayer. 

 

Be brave anyway.

Stand strong anyway.

Take action anyway.

Forgive anyway.

Be happy anyway.

 

A couple of days later I was a few hours in on a very long drive, when a song came on the radio that caught my attention; so much so that when I made it home, I looked it up and added it to my daily prayer routine.  It’s by Devon Gilfillian and entitled, “Love You Anyway.” These lines speak to my heart so much and give me goosebumps every time I hear them.

 

“Everybody's looking for a new solution

You know it takes time.

  Every change don't have to be a revolution, 

But open your eyes. 


And sometimes it's so easy to forget forgiveness. 

I'm feeling so tired. 

And sometimes we don't even know we're burning bridges. 

Until they're on fire.

 

  And I'm gonna love you anyway…”

 

It’s such a great reminder that I don’t have to do anything revolutionary to change the world. All I have to do is love.  Isn’t that what Jesus’s message has been for over 2,000 years now? 

 

Just love Me. 

Just love each other. 

 

Actually, it is such an important message that among other biblical references Matthew, Mark, and Luke all include it in their Gospels.  (Mt 36-40, Mk 12: 28-31, Lk 10:27)

 

This song helped me understand why the Lord needs me to ‘anyway’.  It also added so much richness and power to my understanding of the need for simply loving each other well. As clear and beautiful as this new revelation was for me, something was still missing in my understanding of the lesson that the Holy Spirit was teaching me.

 

One morning I was reading a reflection on faith, hope, and love by Richard Rohr.  In it, he explained that love happens when "we allow ourselves to be filled from The Source", and God is that Source. 

 

While reading the reflection, my brain was on fire!  There were so many connections being made, but the greatest one was this.  God uses us to fill others if they allow, and He uses others to fill us if we allow.  This is how we love each other, which means that the act of receiving love is an act of love in and of itself.

 

In other words,

if I don’t allow others to love me,

if I don’t receive the “thank yous”,

and I reject the compliments,

and I deny others the chance help me,

and I pretend the kind words aren't meant for me,

and I don’t accept the sound advice,

then I am refusing to let God love me.  I am telling Him that He is not allowed near my heart.

 

Most of us understand the need and call to love and serve others well, but we don’t understand that we cannot love others in the way God calls us to unless we allow Him to love us first. We will keep burning those bridges without knowing it, and we will keep forgetting the power of forgiveness, and we will stay so very, very tired from these burdens.

 

So, in this month of February, the month of love and celebration of St. Valentine, let us allow ourselves to receive the Love of Our Lord.  Truly receive Him – deeply, willingly, and fully.


Let Him love you anyway!


Because the truth is, He already does and so deperately wants you to know it.


I pray that we all allow ourselves to welcome him into our hearts so that we are able to


love one another,

forgive one another,

serve one another,

only see Christ in one another.

 

Wishing you Love and Light!

Leah


 

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