This past weekend my brother in law got married and we had the pleasure of helping and being at the event. The wedding reflected the bride and grooms personalities really well. We were all very excited for them and for the future of their family.
Jonathan and I sent them on their honeymoon this week and picked them up last night from spending some time in Mexico. As they were telling us some tales of their trip and the fun things they were able to do, I was struck with how much pleasure it brings to give to others so they experience joy and their dreams can come too! They were alight with joy and simple pleasure after getting away for a few days. And Jonathan and I were also happy because they had experienced such a wonderful time together. It was a joy to give to them.
Two things stand out to me today as I reflect on this.
1) It was a joy to spread joy through giving of ourselves to them during this time! Being willing to give brings joy and fulfillment to the giver as much as it does the recipient. God commands us to give as much for our benefit as for the ones receiving the gift! He doesn't need our gifts as much as he wants our hearts and desires good to come to us through our giving (If only I would better remember this when I struggle to give due to a selfish heart).
2) As the bonds of human family here on earth bind together people that may have never been together otherwise, we learn love and good when God is at the center. Perhaps you would never have been able to stand each other without that family bond but God can help us all love one another and become less harsh and judgemental. If we who struggle with being able to love each other still enjoy giving to one another then God must really love to lavish on us because he loves us perfectly all the time. I acknowledge this in my head but I struggle to grasp and believe this in my heart!
Father help me to grasp your love so I may rest in it lavishly and learn to love others more completely! Thank you for the gift of family and help me to love them better too!