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Saturday, June 06, 2009

I Love You

A little while ago during a game of sorts, I had to answer the question, "What do you want most right now?" And I remember thinking hard and coming up with, "To be understood--to feel like people see and appreciate what I do."
I didn't mean to say it like I'm being misunderstood or unappreciated in my life. When I think about it now, I realize that I am so blessed with so many things--a lot of appreciation for the different ministries that I'm involved in, a lot of recognition for the music and things that I create, and a lot of love and support from my parents who praise me for the good more than they rebuke me for the bad. I'm thankful for all of that.
I think, though, that there are these times that come every now and then when you feel like people are looking at you through a raincloud, judging you more for the times that you forget to do your JJT than for the times that you struggle to get it done. Times when you feel like the people you work with, for whatever reason, want to believe that you're spoiled, selfish, and getting more than you deserve. Times when you want to make them understand the feeling behind what you do; times when you want someone to walk in and see you getting desperate with the Lord because you feel like you're alone in the struggle. Times when you tell Jesus you just want to give up because everyone in your home seems more put-together than you are, and you're too haphazard to be what they expect you to be.
I can get up over this because I know that, for the most part, it's all in my head. But I see and I know people for whom it's more of a reality. People who are not nearly as appreciated or loved and accepted as they should be. People who try, people who fight, people who feel frail because no one is helping them to feel strong. I think it's probably the biggest reason why anyone has loneliness trials that feel like the heaviest weight in the universe--because the rest of us don't see, hear, and touch often enough. Isn't that why people, even when they're in a relationship, can still feel lonely?
There are so many wonderful people around the world--people who sacrifice on a daily basis, who give as much as is humanly possible. I think sometimes, we tend to expect such greatness from people because of the warped perception that we have of people that we esteem "truly great"--some Bible characters, people like Mother Teresa, or the missionaries that go someplace and do heroic, selfless things, almost get eaten by cannibals, whose 1st, 2nd, and 3rd wives die of malaria, and whose faith is always recorded as having been "unwavered."
The thing is, though, that human service is so much less dramatic and pure than that. The most "pure" we can be is still speckled with small prides and selfishnesses. The most "giving" we can be is still sometimes holding something back. The most warm and open we can be is still protected in some way, still shielding, still suspecting. Even working at our hardest we have slumps in productivity, time-management, inspiration. We're so multi-angular that we should never be compared with one another--but we are.
It's not so much about the physical manifestations of "affection." I think it's mostly about deciding to be thankful for someone because of their hard work rather than getting flustered because of what they forgot to cover. Appreciating people out loud from the deepest place in your heart. Jumping in bed and talking with people. Telling people someone you admire them for being a fighter. Getting a prophecy for someone. Holding someone's hand. Talking about your weaknesses and telling people how you admire them for their strengths. Hugging someone for a little longer than you usually would and telling them "I really love seeing you!" with more feeling than you usually would.
I have to say, I wouldn't be in the Family today if not for the times when people held me close to them and made me feel like a part of them, like they'd love to work with me, or even just see me around. There are some people that silently love, with a REAL smile and a squeeze of the hand. These people are the people I treasure, because they are the real reason I'm happy and I'm still fighting for whatever it is I'm fighting for.
I don't really have an idea for how to wrap this up--I probably could've wrapped it up a couple paragraphs back, cause of course you all know what I'm talking about. I didn't mean to get too dramatic about it, either. So here is probably a good place to...yeah.


Blogger ditzydevil said...

Aw, I'm so glad i hug you genuinely! Cause i really do as much as i can!! Whenever i hug you im like "Squeeze...i like Flo..so very much". But then my hugs are cut short because in the corner of my eye i can see my kids reaping havoc! Catch me at some alone time and i promise my hug will rock your world!!

6/06/2009 7:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing your heart, Flo, as it really speaks deep and personal. I can relate. Are you sure it's, for the most part, just in your head? Hmmm...

Love and prayers,

Jake the FGA

6/06/2009 10:12 PM  
Anonymous James said...

Awesome post, Florence! That was really good about not comparing against the great missionaries and other greats, and instead appreciating what good the people around ARE doing. THanks for taking the time to right this. It helped me. I guess it comes down to, "inasmuch as ye have/haven't done it unto one of the least of these my brethren ye have/haven't done it unto me." Thanks again. Love you.

6/06/2009 11:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well I appreciate you you, Flopo, and YOU are definitely one of my bestest friends--while I am probably one of your most favored worst. I love you!

6/08/2009 7:57 PM  
Blogger Florence said...

Ry, you are sweet!! You are my number one favorite in "Friends that I love and never get to see" category.

And Pidge, you're not at all one of my worst friends. I love you.

6/10/2009 10:03 AM  

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