Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas Experiment

I read 1 John 4:12 ("No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and His love is brought to full expression in us." NLT) a couple of weeks ago and the thought of being an expression of God's love jumped out at me. What would that look like? How am I doing at being an expression of God's love?

So I decided to try an experiment. For the time remaining till Christmas, I would consciously try to be God's expression of love to the people around me (including family).

It's been a couple of weeks and I have to tell you that it's changed my attitude about Christmas and shopping and the rest. I look forward to each outing and am on the lookout to see what will happen. Instead of dreading shopping, I anticipate opportunities to show God's love to people.

For example, I ran into CVS to pick up a couple of things before heading home. I briefly asked the new clerk something about Christmas and she launched into a lengthy story of how she had just moved to Nashville from Illinois, but left all her family behind. I felt God nudging me to slow down and listen and genuinely hear her story. She told me about the gifts she had made for her grandchildren (afghans with each of their names on them) and how much she loved them, etc. Instead of feeling irritation at this interruption of my scheduled stops, I tried to show love and kindness that Jesus would have given her if He were here on earth.

I know this is a really simple thought (and something I should be doing every day of my life) but it has given me a new perspective and more opportunities to show God's love to people. And isn't that what Christmas is really about....God loving and giving His best to people.

Merry Christmas...may we all be an expression of God's great love to those who need it.