As humans, our emotions can vary widely throughout a whole range of subjects. Valentine’s day is this coming Thursday, so today I want to focus in on love. We are capable of feelings several types of love, and each type has its own focus and intensity.
There is an old saying concerning love. “If you love, let it go. If it never returns, it was never yours anyway. If it does return, it will be yours forever. If it returns and eats everything in sight and leaves a mess, you are either married or are a parent.”
For the next two days we will take a look at different types of love from both a worldly and Godly perspective.
The first type of love we will look at is the love between a parent and a child.
THE LOVE BETWEEN A PARENT AND CHILD
There is the love between a parent and a child. One young boy said love was when his daddy read him a bedtime story. He went on to say that true love was when his daddy didn’t skip any pages.
I remember when my 7 year old son and I had a difference of opinion about his bike. Several times he would leave his bike in the middle of the driveway. That got me mad because when I came home from work, I could not park my Jeep on the driveway or inside the garage unless I got out and moved his bike out of the way.
One time I happened to come home just as he had left his bike there and was running inside the house. I waited a couple of minutes to see if came back out and moved his bike, but he didn’t. So I got out of my Jeep and went inside the house. Then I ordered him to move his bike out of the way so I could park.
I was fuming, and as I turned to walk back outside to my Jeep, he followed me but instead of moving his bike, he stood there looking at me. I was about to continue my tirade, but he quickly asked me where the end of the lecture went.
I asked him what he was talking about, and he reminded me that the end of the lecture was when I said, “I love you, Son, so let’s try to correct this, okay?”
That was the end of my anger, and the end of his blocking the driveway. This was also a sign of the love shared between a father and a son.
It’s Harder Than you Know
In the world, a parent loves their children and a child loves his or her parents. But, as those of you who have raised children probably already know, there are times when being a parent is very sweet, and then there are times that are very difficult.
As parents, we strive to take care of our children and give them everything they need, don’t we? And as children, since we aren’t mature enough to always know what we need, we depend fully on our parents to give us what we want.
If we are to model our lives after Jesus, should we not also model our relationship with our children after His relationships with children?
There is a Bible passage that begins with Jesus talking to His disciples. They had come to Him and asked who the greatest was in the kingdom of Heaven. Here is what Jesus told them in …
‘He called a little child and had him stand among them. And He said, “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of Heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child I the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven.’
Jesus was saying that a child’s heart is absolutely pure. It has no unloving feelings towards anyone and has no ungodly characteristics. It is the essence of God to put it mildly.
And notice that Jesus didn’t say we needed to be like them. He said we needed to change to be like them. That denotes the purity of a child, and the sinfulness of an adult.
There is another passage that talks about how Jesus dealt with children.
‘The little children were brought to Jesus for Him to place His hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked those who brought them. Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of Heaven belongs to such as these.”
I am sure the disciples had Jesus’ best interest at heart. I believe they were trying to protect Him from the public, much like we see the Secret Service doing for the president today.But Jesus gave them a rebuke. And in so doing, He again elevated the purity of children to a Heavenly level.
Now, if Jesus placed so much love on children, should we not do the same? Jesus handled children with love, not harshness. But how many times have we treated our children like I treated my son the day he blocked the driveway?
Have you ever been harsh with your children? I have. More times than I care to remember! If you have, I challenge you to love your children like Jesus and to give that up to the Lord. Then ask Him to help you treat your children the way Jesus treated children around him. Then, go tell your children that you are sorry for the harshness you have treated them with and pray for them. In doing so, you will be modeling humility and showing them that it’s OK to ask for forgiveness.
Now go…. and show yourself a man!
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