…..Love

loveThis weekend I had the opportunity to go to the CHILD Cancer Fund’s Golf Tournament Kick Off Party in Sawgrass.  The event was a kick off and fundraiser for the tournament with a silent and live auction.  Some of the items in the silent auction were paintings done by child cancer patients.  One that stood out to me was this painting for Love by a child we will call Patience.  I initially liked it for the cause, the artist, the colors and the design.

My appreciation for the painting changed Saturday morning as I watched the sunrise at Jax Beach.  Sidenote — If you have been following my blog, you know I love sunrises and sunsets.  It’s probably the most peaceful thing. ever.  I got a coffee from Starbucks, grabbed my beach chair and a towel and just watched the sunrise over the beach.  I love this relaxing time to reflect, pray and just listen to the ocean.  Time seems to fly by faster and faster these days.  When was the last time you stopped and watched a sunrise or sunset?  When was the last time you stopped and watched something beautiful, something fascinating? 

So this was my something beautiful moment, my sunrise!

love sunrise

Absolutely breathtaking!

While I was watching the sunrise I thought about the painting.  Why does it have 5 dots before the word love?  I’ve seen “love…” so many times.  “Love…” makes me think you have love and then what.  And was there nothing before Love? We live in a society that’s always looking for the next step.  The single people want to be married, the married people want kids, the family wants more kids or a bigger house or more _____, fill in the blank.  It seems like love’s just not enough.  What we have in the present just isn’t enough.  Everything comes after love, hence Love…  I think this is the wrong way of thinking and I hope you can see this too.

John 3:16, the famous Tim Tebow scripture, says “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”  When I think of God’s love for us, I think of the cross and what happened before the cross.  Jesus was rejected by many but was a provider, a healer, a miracle worker, a teacher and our savior.  Jesus poured his love on his people and then pour his love out to us by sacrificing himself on the cross.  What happened before the cross, the dots before the word Love, was the perfect representation of God’s love, which paved the path for God’s everlasting love on us through the holy spirit.  I don’t think of God as “love and now what” I think of God’s perfect love for us, his agape love, and what happened before the cross when Jesus was persecuted and loved us/the people despite their sin and hate.

1 Corinthians 13:13 says “and now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”  At the end there’s love.  Not in the beginning and then there’s more.  But that you have all of everything you’ve ever needed and love is the greatest of what remains.  So for me “…..Love” says despite all the stuff that happens before love that we don’t think about, love is in the end.  You will love again and be loved and it will be agape love.  Thinking no matter what trials and tribulations you might face, God’s Love overcomes and overpowers everything.

Our love should be the same.  We are called to be Christ-like.  To be Christ-like is to put God first and to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” Mark 12:30. To put others first and to love no matter what the past, present or future might hold.  God calls us to “love your neighbor as yourself” – Mark 12:31 

So when I think about Christ-like love, I think …..Love.  …..Love meaning that whatever happened before and because of what happens, what remains is love.  If we are to have this kind of mentality, I think our world would be a more caring, nurturing place.   God is all about second and third and fourth and so on chances because he’s a …..Love kind of God.

love2

So are you living life as a Love….. kind of person – thinking now that I have love, X, Y and Z will come next?  Or are you a …..Love kind of person- where you love despite the before and if you’re going through the “…..” phase now, you know that Love will remain?  Through persevering and focusing on God even during the “…..” The love that remains will be great.

So I challenge you to take a simple painting, a picture, a moment and think about its deeper meaning.  Pray on it.  Reflect on it.  Thank you Patience for this beautiful painting and reflection on love!

Advertisements

A Date with my Garmin

garmin4

Asics GT-1000  Running Shoes = $100 from 1st Place Sports.  Garmin Forerunner 405CX Watch = $140 on Ebay.  Feeling the road, wind and sun for 8 miles = PRICELESS.

Today was absolutely amazing because of my run!  However, I wasn’t optimistic for it, might have been was dreading it at first,  and actually kept pushing it off until noon.   Fearful of not being able to finish, the weather being bad, me being tired… you name it, I complained it!

I watched a special with Robin Roberts yesterday, and she said something that stuck.  “Being optimistic is like a muscle that gets stronger with use.”   Robin is such a beautiful, strong woman who has overcome so much with her battle with cancer.  I think she can be an example to all of us of how someone can take tragic news and turn it into a positive message about how precious and short life can be.  

 garmin6

I’ve been staying on top of my River Run training and today’s run was a perfect way to end the week.  My 8 mile run turned into something so much more than just another run.   It was a time to reflect on the week, life, everything.  It was a time to focus on myself; each mile felt like I accomplished a new feat.  I realized I really need to take more yoga classes.  I realized being lazy is going to give me a sunburn!  At the end of the run, I realized I set a new record!  8 miles in 1 hr 6 minutes… that’s 8:14 per mile!! WOOO WHOO!

Never leave home on a run without: A Garmin and awesome tunes!!

garmin5

I definitely felt like this today!

garmin

Running on Chocolate

granola

Confession – I should have a sign that says “will try anything once as long as it contains chocolate.”  I took my occasional every other day trip to Publix to get some cereal, marshmallows and peanut butter (bad idea!) for a little snack when I saw Cascadian Farm Organic Granola Bars on sale.  I’ve never had these before but in my failed attempts to trade in my muffin tins for fruit cups, I thought I would give them a try.  8 grams of whole grain, no artificial flavors or preservatives, low sodium, low cal,  and CHOCOLATE.

I say failed attempts because I walked out of Publix with all the ingredients to make the best form of cereal possible – cereal + sugar + chocolate + peanut butter = Cocoa Crispy Peanut Butter Treats.

feet2

I didn’t have high hopes for the bars but they DEFINITELY exceeded expectations on organic granola bars.  The oats are big, chocolate super sweet and just filling in general.  I liked them so much that on my next trip to publix, I picked up another box while still on sale.  My hopes are that I can have a granola bar instead of the yummy brownies that are sitting on the kitchen table – Major Sweet Tooth Problem Here.

For anyone following my River Run Training – I’m doing pretty good!  Put 5 miles on my shoes on Monday, 5 Tuesday, 3 yesterday and today was a rest day (hence the blog post!).  Tomorrow is 60 minutes of cross training and then Saturday is a LONG run.  I’m getting nervous about my long run but have some great music to keep me going and hopeful for amazing weather.

Here’s something I can totally relate to….

feet

I wear a size 11 women’s shoesize 12 in women’s running shoes!  I’m only 5’7″ so I’m convinced something happened along the growth road where my feet grew outward disproportionately to my height.  My feet are not attractive by any means but I’ve had them for quite some time and have grown found of them!  I joke that I should have been taller and maybe I would have been a basketball player?  Then I remember my hand-eye coordination, or lack there of, and remember one of the reason I run is because there are no other objects involved!!

Tomorrow is Friday and I can’t wait for the weekend!  Nothing really planned and I’ll spend a good amount of it playing catch up but just excited for more of the beautiful weather we have been having!

What are you doing this weekend?