Y'all, I LOVE my kids, with every fiber of my being, with every breath I take, with every toy I step on, and butt I wipe. I love them! God has given us moms and dads this amazing capacity for love that we didn't even know was humanly possible until we held that baby in our arms. And He multiplies it! Each additional child we had, I couldn't even imagine having more love to give, but, oh, did I ever!
But what if we were called to tolerate them? What if, as the world teaches tolerance, that was the best we had to offer our children? We would fail miserably! I mean, raise your hand if you can't tolerate your children.
Here, here! Me, every day! Don't y'all jump at once.
Because it sounds awful, doesn't it? Not being able to tolerate your children? What kind of monster are you?! But see, here's the thing, if you look up the definition of tolerate this is what you will find: verb; allow the existence, occurrence, or practice of (something that one does not necessarily like or agree with) without interference.
Without what now? Without interference? Do you do that with your children? Oh, I do not like or agree with the hitting of your brother, but I will allow it, without interference, because that is what any good and tolerant person would do.
NO! Just, no.
Goodness, I sometimes have days when I have to interfere with every single unmanageable behavior you can imagine. We do not sit idly by and tolerate their every decision. We are trying to raise decent human beings, you know, the kinds that don't just walk up and take things from other people, the kinds that don't throw themselves all over the store floor because they can't get what they want, the kinds that no longer pee or poop on themselves (because, at some point we certainly stop tolerating that, am I right?). We don't tolerate our children. We love them.
What if we applied this to everyone in our lives? Don't get me wrong, as adults, we don't need to go running around interfering in everyone's business. Sometimes it might be helpful, to stop a harmful behavior, but most of the time, a matter of opinion doesn't need a giant buttinsky. The point I'm trying to express here is simple, at its core; society teaches tolerance, which is actually quite difficult to attain. Even a peaceful protest, by the very definition of tolerance, is an interference in something you don't agree with or particularly like, but while you are peacefully protesting, expressing your intolerance, so to speak, you can still show love. You can show love by remaining peaceful, and respectful of your community and public property. You can show love by expressing to a group of people that you empathize with their struggle. You can even show love to those you don't agree with, by remaining kind and considerate and even helpful when needed. See, in the midst of trying to implement change in a situation you are not going to tolerate, you can still show love. We've been doing it all wrong! Stop trying to tolerate people. Because you will be faced with intolerable situations, and you will fail. But love never fails. Super cheesy, but true. You don't have to agree with someone to help brush the snow off their car. You don't even have to know the opinions of the person behind you in the drive-thru to pay for their order as a pleasant surprise. Being tolerant doesn't encourage those actions. Being tolerant walks on by, but love interferes and makes someone's day. Love wins.
As a wife, mom of 4, and business owner, finding time to spend in the Word, can be difficult, so I get it! Come join me each Monday for a simple message of hope, faith, and encouragement amidst some honest mommy moments.
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