If there is one thing that parenthood teaches it is this: Love is a choice! I was sleeping soundly when my seven-year-old son stumbled into my room well past midnight. “Dad, I lost my tooth! Here, feel!” Half asleep, half awake I stuck out my finger, found his mouth and tried to locate the empty place between his teeth. No luck! Not to be denied this opportunity for midnight show-and-tell, he grabbed my finger, put it in his mouth and moved it around until he found the gap.
Remember, it is past midnight! I could have said, “Son, it is past midnight, so long as its not stuck in your throat we’ll check on it when I get up.” But I didn’t. There is something about love that is willing to wade past a mouth of saliva to explore the newly created crevices in a seven-year-old set of choppers. It is a love that reaches a tired finger even when a tired body rebels.
Love doesn’t have to “feel like it,” because love is not spelled F-E-E-L. God spells love G-I-V-E. God’s love is a wholehearted willingness to sacrifice for the benefit of others while not expecting something in return. In short, it searches for missing teeth at midnight. Paul gives a full description of God’s giving kind of love in his letter to the Corinthians
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. Love will last forever. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8 NLT)
Take another look at the famous love passage. Do a little self-exploratory surgery of the soul. Do you really have the ability on your own to be patient and kind? Can you ward off thoughts of jealously? Can you throw away the little record of wrongs you have been secretly recording? Do you always rejoice when truth wins out – even if it means you were wrong?
Love is a supernatural work. It takes a supernatural power to keep it going. The fuel to give of self, to love the neglected, or to be really glad when someone else excels comes from the Spirit of God (Galatians 5:22-24). Yielded to him I find the power to search for missing teeth at midnight.
FOCAL POINT: Every time you glance at the clock ask the Lord for the strength to show his love.
Copyright © 2009 Tommy Kiedis