What we think is ours is really not.
I have trouble sometimes with giving away my love and blessing to others. For example, when I meet someone new for the first time, I tend to be careful about letting down my guard, of fully being present with that person in that moment in time. There are too many voices in my head who distract me. I love that Jesus was able to understand the moments he had with others, and made the most of these encounters.
Fear is a big part of my reluctance, I am afraid of far too many things to be fully Christian. I feel afraid of being taken advantage of, being ridiculed, insecurities I have lived with and never let go of.
I feel in control I guess if I withhold my love and blessings, I am the decider, you have earned my trust, you have not.
So my practice is to sign all my emails of late with , Blessings, Pastor Steve. I have to think about it sometimes, but the idea is that the love God pours upon me is such a blessing, I want to share this with others. This blessing is not finite, it is not petty, it is not withheld, even in those terrible moments when I behave badly. I find it takes more energy to withhold than it is to give freely, and so much work that keeps me from freely living.
Life is a gift, I may not always understand or feel wonderful as I live the gift, but when I remember that all I have has been given to me freely, no strings attached, I mean the important stuff, then I can remember that those who have been left out by myself or others and have not received the gift. They instead have felt love withheld, food withheld, because others think they own these things, but they don't.
I know we need to live lives that reflect the depth and the beauty, and the love of God. We need to be kinder to one another, help one another, forgive one another, share with one another, instead of withholding these gifts.
When we become humble, admitting when we are wrong, seeing how no one is greater than or less than ourselves, we can see the way to be in the world that brings blessings, and love.
There are far too many with big loud voices who want us to judge one another, who want us to do violence against one another, who want us to be afraid, so very afraid. Cause they know when we fear, our best selves go into hiding.
I heard today that Halloween costumes often reflect our greatest fears so we can make fun of those fears when we wear a scary costume. So I wonder what a bully costume would look like? What would a greedy politician look like, what would a judgmental Christian look like? What would our darkest and most dangerous self look like? We need to name all of these so we can get over them. We need to move forward in bringing blessing, not threats of being left behind, to a hurting world.