Tag Archives: loving others

I am commanded…

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.

Colossians 3:12-14 ESV

After sitting in the car, waiting rooms or doctor appointments (not to mention almost three hours in the MRI machine), my attempts to write a few emails Thursday evening were fatal as I was so cold, I just couldn’t function–namely my hands. I heated the scarf my aunt gave me (it is designed that way…therapeutic), got cozy, put on my slippers, made some tea and sat down to watch the movie– The Second Chance. It has been a long time since I have watched the movie; and I only thought of it, because my friend and I had brought it up during our coffee chat a few weeks ago.

The movie is set in America–typical big city where you have the “rich” side of town and then the other. In this case, the story is themed over the church–on the rich side, it is The Rock. However, their roots started at the sister church on the poor side of town. “The Second Chance” church serves the community in that part of town. The movie encircles faith in action…0n the common ground: getting out of your comfort zone; laying down pride; living by faith; serving, loving, forgiving.

I am not going to spoil the movie, but I will say that Pastor Jake’s ending less-than-five-minutes speech is one of the best sermons I have ever heard. It is profound and so truthful. In light of the movie’s events, he reminds his congregation that they are commanded to love their enemies, even in the face of injustice.

Jesus said to love our enemies and pray for them (Matthew 5:43-48). I don’t have enemies (not to my knowledge), but in terms, there are certain individuals both in my past and a few in the present in which I hold bitter thoughts towards. In loving my enemies, I am also commanded to forgive my enemies; and although I do not see them as “enemies,” the fact I am bitter towards them sort of implies enemy status. Those in my past, I have no contact with anymore; the forgiveness is now between me and the Lord.

The present bitterness is caused by the feeling of injustice; I feel robbed of time over the past few months mainly in the area of driving. The lack of trust and inconsistency of “concerns” resulting in a long period of waiting caused me to become angry. I felt angry for my family–the extra burden it placed on them during that time. And just when I can drive, my car goes in the shop for a week; why didn’t I just take it over (three minutes down the road) when I was not dependent on it? So I am angry at myself for being too nice–for trying too hard to not “do anything wrong.”

The question is then, “How long do I wish to remain angry? Bitter?” It will only keep me in the past, which is where I don’t want to be anyway. Forgiveness is hard; like prayer, it is easier to mouth than mean it sincerely in your heart. It may not be a drastic change overnight, but the choice is mine: will I love, pray and forgive my enemies–just as God in Christ did for me? (Ephesians 4:32)


Filed under Books and Movies, Family Times, Hospital Trips, Uncategorized

February 12, 1809

I never took note of this, or maybe most calendars don’t add it to their days–but I noticed on my new calendar that today is Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. That is what it says. I went around the house and checked other calendars to see if it was posted on their February 12th as well. I found one that said it again, along with the date: 1809. 🙂

In light of Lincoln’s birthday, I thought I would share with you my favorite quote:

If you look for the bad in people expecting to find it, you surely will.

~Abraham Lincoln

I first heard this quote on Disney’s classic, Pollyanna. Pollyanna, a missionary child, is sent to live with her rich aunt after the death of her parents. Encountering a whole different world–now being rich–Pollyanna never seems to lose her spirit of spreading joy, simplicity and gladness with others. She even teaches everyone her “Glad game.” It starts to spread around town, changing people as they start to see life with a different attitude.

Because her aunt is rich and powerful, much of the town is run by her decision, even the sermons at church. During an afternoon talk with the preacher, Pollyanna asked if the minister liked being the preacher of the town. She follows by sharing stories of her father (who had also been a minister) and said that he found a quote that helped him when he got discouraged. It was engraved in her necklace. It was this Abraham Lincoln quote. In reading the quote, the minister realizes that he has been using his pulpit as a way of condemnation. He learns to love his congregation, and in return…more joy and gladness spreads around the town.

I can’t say much about Abraham Lincoln’s life. I don’t honestly know much about it. I know big events, such as the battles of the Civil War and some of his speeches but nothing past that. However, what I have read in glimpse formats throughout some books is that he respected all mankind. Like Pollyanna, that attitude spread–even in spite of the Civil War. He did not agree with everyone, but he had respect. The Apostle Paul writes in Romans 12:16-21,

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written,

‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay’, says the Lord.

To the contrary, ‘if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.’ Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Valentine’s Day is only but a few short days away. What greater lesson to remember than to seek the good in others, even loving our enemies.

With malice towards none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds[.]

~Abraham Lincoln. Second Inaugural Address, March 4, 1865. (1)


Lincoln Memorial. Washington, D.C.



Gettysburg Address.



Lincoln’s hat. Smithsonian Museum, Washington, D.C.


Standing close to where the Gettysburg Address was said. Gettysburg Cemetary, PA.


Boritt, Gabor. The Gettysburg Gospel: The Lincoln Speech that Nobody Knows. New York: Simon & Shuster Paperbacks, 2006.

Gross, Anthony (ed). The Wit and Wisdom of Abraham Lincoln. New York: Fall River Press, 1994.

Pollyanna. Disney, 1960.


(1) “16. Abraham Lincoln[,] 1861-1865.” Whitehouse.gov. Retrieved February 12, 2013. http://www.whitehouse.gov/about/presidents/abrahamlincoln

Pollyanna. Disney, 1960.


Filed under Books and Movies, Family Times, Random, Uncategorized

Christmas all year long.


Yesterday’s Christmas Eve service was the same as Sunday. Off I went Sunday with my family to their church so I braced myself for a service without interpreters, which I knew. The pastor usually leaves his sermon notes copied off on the table in the foyer, but there were none left when we arrived. I just watched the praise team from the balcony where we sat and read the words to the songs, occasionally hearing the beat of the next stanza so I could try to sing along. The sermon started and I just followed the three main bullet points of the sermon about the particular Advent candle. I had my Bible so I read some passages and found amusement from the boy sitting in front of me trying to figure out where the exact middle of the Bible was–he ended up in the middle of the Psalms. No surprise, I told myself…seems like I had done that myself when I was his age. We took communion and then the praise band did an acoustic version of “O Little Town of Bethlehem.” They sang all the verses–and even though I could hear all the words, I just sat there and listened for most of it. Just letting the words sink in. “O come to us, abide with us, our Lord Emmanuel.”

Last night was different though the same church, same pastor, same seats. Except this time my attitude was different. In the car, I kept thinking to myself–this is ridiculous! I could just stay at home and read my Bible and sing a few hymns to myself. I felt more like a hypocrite really–wearing my favorite skinny jeans, cute sparkly top and sparkly shoes. Like dressing up for nothing…was what my thoughts were. The songs had no words on the power point; there were no bullet points to the message; and worst of all, I forgot my Bible so I couldn’t even read any passages. I just sat there. My right hearing aid was not right and so I had to take it out; my shoes were bugging me (and my sister told me they were making noise as I was trying to take them off); and I just really wanted to leave. We did not even have candles to hold when they started the song and proceeded with the congregation lighting each others’ candles. The people in front of us turned and realized we had no candles. They offered theirs. Another woman did the same. When all the candles were lit, we sang Silent Night.


In the candle glow, I realized that this is what Christmas should be like–sharing our candles with others so they too have light in their time of need. It brings hope and love and peace. The Light of Christmas isn’t meant to burn out the 26th of December. The message lasts all year.

From my house to yours: Merry Christmas!






Filed under Adjusting to NF2, Family Times, Muffy, Random