“I love you, Mom,” she says as she exits the car every morning at her high school.
She’s sixteen now and a sophomore in high school. (hold me!) The days of my dropping her off at school are rapidly coming to an end. And I’d be lying if I didn’t say I’m holding on tight. I’ve cherished being the one who takes her to school and sends her into her day with a reminder that she is loved. I’m thankful that I’ve been the one who picks her up every day and gets to be her sounding board for all the things — good and bad — that transpired while she was at school.
And now, it’s coming to an end. Reality is crashing in on me fast and furious. Her days in our home are decreasing far more quickly than I’d like. Even if she lives here while she goes to nursing school, we’re still on a fast downward slide.
Which has made me think about all. the. things. All the failures (and there have been many!) and all the good times (and there have been many of those too!) play through my mind and I wish I could slow time down. Since I can’t, I’ve spent some time making a list of the things I want her to know about several different topics. Since we’re talking love here at Mothers of Daughters this month, I thought I’d share the five truths about love I want my girl to know.
We love because we are loved.
John said it simply, “Beloved, if God so loved us, so we ought also to love one another” (1 John 4:11). God has loved us and so we love others. It’s simple but it isn’t easy! I want my girl to grasp this reality of God’s love for her and allow it to so infiltrate her life that she can’t hep but love others the way He has loved her.
Love is a choice.
We say that all the time, I know. But the truth is, in this world where people fall in and out of love and commitment is only as real as how people feel today, I pray my daughter understands love isn’t a feeling, it’s a decision. We don’t always feel loving or loved, but we can choose to love no matter what. Paul told the Philippians his prayer was that their “love would abound more and more.” So our love grows when we stop allowing it to be dictated by how we feel and instead choose to love based on the truth of God’s Word and His love for us.
Love gives generously and humbly.
So much of life is about equal exchange … you do this for me and I’ll do this for you. But love doesn’t work that way. John 15:13 tells us, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” Love gives generously – just as God has given generously to us. Love serves humbly – just as Christ has modeled for us.
Love gives the benefit of the doubt.
This might be one of the hardest truths to grasp. But love believes the best, hopes for the best. Love offers the benefit of the doubt rather than looking for trouble or conflict. Love assumes the best not the worst. I love how Paul said this in 1 Corinthians 13:7, “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
Love sustains us in life’s struggles.
Paul wrote, “we are are more than conquerors through him who loved us” (Romans 8:37). When life is hard and our strength is gone, the love of God is our strength. When we know and abide in His love, He equips us to walk with grace and confidence through every trial, every heartache, and every hardship life brings.
Of all the lessons she has learned and will learn in our home, my greatest desire is that she grasp the height and depth and width and breadth of God’s love for her and out of that awareness that she will genuinely, humbly, and generously love others.
What is a lesson on love you want your girl to know?