Wasteful Love?

imageAs many of you know I recently had the privilege, duty, opportunity and obligation to host a baby shower for the daughter of a dear friend of mine. You may wonder why I use those particular adjectives to describe my compulsion/desire to be a hostess, after all I did volunteer! The older I get the more I realize how disguised and layered my actions, attitudes and motives are. Jeremiah 17:9 states, ” The heart is deceitful above all things… who can understand it?” Even this redeemed heart is conflicted and impure more often than I know or care to admit.

A heart is dynamic. It is not static either as an organ or in reference to our will, emotions or desire. I can start off with the right motives and at some point my motives can change. Or perhaps because I’m still in this sanctification process, as the Bible refers to it, it is impossible to maintain a pure heart 100% of the time. Or…gasp… I’m as spiritually challenged as I’ve always feared. At any rate, time tends to reveal the convoluted nature of the reason I do things and my “hidden agenda” is brought to light along the way. In my case, “response” can be the end game for doing what I do. (See previous blog “Redemption of a People Pleaser”).

Back to the shower! Here are a few facts you need to know.
#1- My friendship with the mother of the “mommy to be” goes back long and deep. Thirty years ago she and her husband took me and my husband under their discipleship wings nurtured and loved us. Our friendship has spanned countries, kids, joy and sorrow. This is not a casual relationship.

#2- I have witnessed my sweet, loyal, faithful friend endure many hardships and challenges on every level, (physically, emotionally, spiritually, economically) you name it and they have faced it with tenacious faith. If ever anyone deserved (I don’t use that would casually) a celebration this is that person!

#3- Mommy to be and me share the same name and birthday…Hello????? It’s only fitting!

#4- I’m conservative by nature and nurture. I recall two actual birthday parties during my entire childhood. I grew up in a generation where at weddings we had cake, mints and peanuts at the reception. Bridal and baby showers were simple gatherings of friends and families, not “events”.

#5- Since I currently live in a small condo I enlisted my party planner personified daughter in law Jamie, who lives in our former residence, to plan the “EVENT”! And plan it she did! This girl was made to be a professional party/event planner for the rich and famous!

#6- Lastly, before I lose you my devoted readers…my husband has a finance degree, is conservative in spending and is totally behind in the current costs of hosting social events.

Taking the above list into consideration, my motives and delight in hosting this shower went from joyous anticipation to mounting fear and anxiety….”Why did I commit to this?” …”This is not going to be good enough”….”This is too much!”…”How am I going to explain the cost to Mr. Economical?”…” My friend and her daughter are totally worth it!” …. “I could have supported a child through Compassion International for a year!” On and on it went, contrasting and conflicting emotions and thoughts.

I prayed and prayed. Weeks before, day before, day of “The Event”. “God, you invented celebrations and the reasons we have them. You are all about love and relationship. Please take our efforts, time and money (That come from and belong to you.) and communicate to my friend and “mommy to be” Your love. Amen.”

The shower was fabulous, by the way! I knew in my heart when it was over and the guests had departed, we did a good thing. God did a good thing, through Jamie and me.

It wasn’t until the next day, however that God revealed to me the truth that He was letting me experience in the midst it all. Bear with me one final short list.

#1- God’s love is extravagant! “For God so loved the world he gave His ONLY son, that WHOEVER believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16
#2- It has little to do with us “deserving” and everything to do with Jesus’ love. “While we were yet sinners Christ died for us!” Romans 5:8
#3- It’s costly! The disciples, Mary the mother of Jesus and all those that loved Jesus no doubt were horrified at his beating, scourging, nakedness, and crucifixion. What a terrible, terrible waste and injustice.

In no way was my little party a demonstration of love on the order of God’s love for us. “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:13 I just laid down a little green$ and time. Not to mention, Jesus laid down His perfect life for imperfect us. That blows my mind now and eternally!

What I did learn is that God calls us here to express His love. We respond; imperfectly, clumsily, anxiously, with mixed emotions and little faith. In the end, He does what only He can do, produce pure love! I am so glad He prompted and allowed me to have a itty bitty part in that expression!πŸ˜€πŸ’œ


About whitehousesouth

I am a Christian by God's mercy and grace. I am a wife, mom and nana to ten beautiful grandchildren. I want to reveal the love of Christ to everyone I meet.
This entry was posted in Facts, Faith, Feelings, Friends, God and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Wasteful Love?

  1. You just wrecked me! πŸ˜‰ written comically, beautifully, and with the ability to produce so much insight and wisdom. Being yours and daddy’s daughter I obviously have all those same conflicting feelings with events and parties. Motive motive motive. What’s my motive?!?! What is or was my motive lol!!! I can totally relate to all that. It’s wonderful to know that Gods love is extravagant and he does do extravagant through us. I love how you mentioned the fact that its his money. Y’all are a family that I know for a fact steers as far from accumulating debt as possible, so in the world it technically is “your money” but you acknowledge, “nope, still Gods. He entrusted this to me and I will seek him in how to be a steward with it.”

    So much good in one post. Thank you for sharing the honest truth.

    As always Jamie gets mad props for decorating on a dime. Girls got skill.

    • Thanks, Kate! I appreciate the encouragement a lot! I always have this surge of doubt every time I write a blog immediately afterwards. I ask myself questions like, “Was that a waste of time? Did that sound stupid..egotistical…self aware? Does anyone care?” But…I enjoy writing and sharing what God is teaching me. Does this sound familiar?πŸ˜‰πŸ˜

      Sent from my iPad


  2. Laura Lane says:

    Oh boy can I relate. I just never put a spiritual spin on things, well not all things. Just finished helping w- kaycies wedding & all the hoop la & I like u kept thinking WHY ? Why are they spending so much $$$ & WHY is thus so important, this ridiculous item & WHY does everything have to be so perfect ? And really what does God think about all of this. Not that Kaycie didn’t deserve (if we deserve anything) it. She’s been the perfect daughter. School teacher, getting her masters in media specialist(librarian)Waited til the right guy came along @ 27 years old & loves the Lord. Kaycie loves doing mission trips & I really think she would have rather done 1 of those. She did want to get married on a farm outside & that she did. It was a beautiful wedding, I guess. I was inside getting the food set up & directing along w- gale 4 other women that were helping, before being trampled by over 200 guest. The food was great, the day was a success, Kaycie is now Mrs. Joshua White. Neil & Missy get to go home to empty nest & begin to pay for this high falutin(spelling?) wedding. Glad it’s them & not us. In so exhausted I got in bed at 8. Your shower was adorable & I’m sure the guest & friend were completely satisfied w- your adorable shower. Everything is an event now. I’m a little weary of it. Yes we do have events in our home but we have & are still learning to do them economically . Our next event us Jennings Family gender reveal. Cupcakes & balloons! Can’t wait. So how’s Kendra handling this baby in top if baby thing. Emma Jane is adorable by the way. Will try to send pics if over the top wedding. Love you!

    Sent from my iPhone

    • I hear ya,sister! Sometimes it’s difficult to discern between “event and excess”. It all has to do with motive. After all, Jesus did turn gallons upon gallons of water into wine!πŸ˜€πŸ‘ And it was his first public miracle, sideline, there must have been a few prior private miracles for Mary to even ask.
      Bottom line…do our celebrations point to us or to God? I think Kaycie’s life and love for Jesus, her pursuing matrimony the way He set forth in oneness is worth all the extravagance that took place!

  3. Dikola says:

    So Good Debbie…I SO wish I lived closer to you!

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