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Recommended Reads: The Only Way to Love Others

Watching her leap into her dad’s arms, it was clear how much three-year-old Rebecca loved her father. Smiling, her mom said, “Well, I guess we know who her heart belongs to, right?” We laughed about what it is to be second fiddle in the eyes of a true daddy’s girl.

Over the past seventeen years, I’ve had a front row seat to the relationship shared between my own daughter and her father. As a daddy’s girl myself, I know how precious that bond is. But as thankful as I am for Casiday’s love for Scott, I pray her love for her heavenly Father will be even greater.

I will give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever. (Psalm 86:12)

Time and again in Scripture, we find God’s desire is for our whole-hearted devotion to Him. But how? How do we give the Lord our whole hearts while also loving others? And how do we teach our children to do the same?

The answer is simple: We can only love others when we know the love of God.

John writes,

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. (1 John 4:7)

God’s love empowers us to love others. This is why we give Him our whole hearts. If we don’t, we will never be able to love Him and love others.

As moms, we have this great privilege of pointing our children to the One who loves them wholly and holy. The One whose heart is never divided, whose love is never changing. We train them and disciple them to present themselves as living sacrifices (Romans 12:1), recognizing our whole lives are an act of worship.

By our example, we show them what it means to heed the Word of God, to act in obedience even when it’s hard or doesn’t make sense. We encourage our children to offer themselves to the Lord, holding nothing back. We nurture a desire in them for a relationship with God. When life is chaotic and frenzied, we show them the value of slowing down and lingering in the presence of the Lord.

Our babies are watching us, learning from us, imitating us. Are we setting an example for them of embracing God wholly, knowing that without Him we truly have nothing?

Maybe today you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by life. Perhaps your heart is torn between loving the Lord and trying to survive.  I get it, I promise. But here’s what I’ve learned: The best gift we can give our children is living out a whole-hearted devotion to the Lord and inviting them to do the same.

It isn’t easy, this choice to have an undivided heart. But, friend, it’s worth it! For us and for our children.

Lord, we long for undivided hearts. Thank you for meeting us where we are, for giving us grace in the middle of all our chaos.  Help us choose you, the better part, the one necessary thing. And as we choose you, may our children learn to do the same. Amen.

{Excerpt adapted from Praying for Girls: Asking God for the Things They Need Most.}

Teri Lynne Underwood is a Lopsided Living encourager and girl mom cheerleader. Wife to Scott and mom to Casiday, she’s generally behind on laundry and caught up on This Is Us.  A Bible teacher at heart, her great passion is encouraging women to dive deep into the Word. Her new book, Praying for Girls: Asking God for the Things They Need Most, is now available. She blogs at terilynneunderwood.com and loves to hang out on Instagram and Facebook.

The post Recommended Reads: The Only Way to Love Others appeared first on (in)courage.

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About Susie Jones

Susie Jones
The administrator of this blog, Susie Jones, is passionate about helping others unlock the full potential of who they where created to be through knowing God intimately and believing that He is who He says He is. The purpose of this blog is to nurture the truth that Christianity is all about a relationship with God, not just another religion.

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