Yesterday’s sermon had so much that spoke to me, I’m still unpacking it all. But there was one part that struck such an accord, I have to share.
The topic was agape or godly love. The pastor spoke, paraphrasing here, “If I am abiding in him, then the people that I’m engaging with I don’t judge them. I just love them. The entire reason we are here is to display the love of God.“
My mother was not only my mom, but my best friend, my confidant, my mentor and almost always my teacher. One of the lessons she instilled first by example and then by words was “our job is simple, love God and then love thy neighbor. If we can do those two things, then there is no room for judgment or hate or anger.”
I realize I may be considered a biased source, but the two things that kept getting repeated about my mother from others when she passed was “I always felt her love” and “I could be myself with her. There was no judgment.” And honestly, she embodied this. The harshest thing I ever heard my mother say about another human was their energy and mine don’t mesh and I can love them from a distance. And she meant it. She made a mistake that she never got over as a child and in that mistake, she took God’s message of love to heart.
I asked her once how she did it, and her reply was simple - because I wouldn’t want someone judging me as I am far from perfect. You see she knew she was flawed. She knew she’d made mistakes. And if she were not perfect, she could not judge others. Equally she choose to love. She often would remind me when I found myself frustrated with someone’s actions - people are all connected just like the human body; it’s just that some people are like our hearts that we feel with each heart beat, others are like your big toe. You forget they are there until you stub them. It was my reminder that even when people annoyed me, I was still to love them. She taught me that while I can hate the behavior, I could still love the person.
I don’t always succeed and sometimes it’s harder than other times, but I try to emulate my mother in this. This lesson has served me so well in life. I truly hope I can be her reflection in this for my babies.
©January 2022 Danielle Cote Serar
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