Friday, February 18, 2011

That's A Beautiful Dress

       Let me remind you that this part of the journey all the way through March is about how God shows us He loves us.  If you have a story of how you have seen demonstrations of His love for you, maybe we can share it on Join The Journey.
       I know in my life, people have become the greatest expxression of His love.  I had a mother that was a constant reminder of God's love.  She died when she was 43 years old at the hands of a drunk driver, yet I have a lifetime of  memories that have God all over them.  Please let me be personal and share a story about her.  She was an incredible woman.  I remember walking with her down town and she would stop at a store window and just stare.  I'd say, "What are looking at?"  She would say, "That's a beautiful dress."  "Why don't you buy it, Mom?"  "There are other things we need more than that dress.", she would say.  I later figured out what she really was saying was that if she didn't spend that money on herself she could spend it on someone else. 
      One of those "someone else" was a young girl named Glenda.  She was from a very poor and rough family.  She had been roughly handled and verbally abused for many years and never looked anyone in the face.  On more than one ocassion I saw some of those store front dresses on her.  Mom would buy material, spread out the newspaper on the kitchen table, cut out a pattern and make Glenda the dress.  I swear it was more beautiful than the one in the window, but recognizable.  She would perm her hair, do her nails and it would lift her head.  Glenda started smiling, she would greet people, shake your hand.  She became a different person.  I give my mom credit for it, but she would say, "I just showed her God loved her."  That's my mom.
      It wasn't so much the beautiful dresses, the matching doll dresses, the perms and other kind things that she did for many other girls that I remember.  What has stuck in my memory is what she gave up in order to do those things.  The personal sacrifice, she wanted those beautiful dresses for herself.  She made all her own clothes, cutting her patterns out of the newspaper from memory of a dress she had seen, so she would have money leftover, rather than purchasing the dress.      Not only her sacrifice, but her willingness to use her talents to benefit others.  She was always looking for opportunities to "show someone God loved them."  To me that reflects the heart and character of Jesus.
      He was willing to leave Glory, where He was worshipped around the clock, to be rejected by earth.  He suffered a horrible death so He could purchase something for us, REDEMPTION!  I'm thankful for His presence, His power, His provision, His protection, but I will be eternally grateful for what He gave up to show me He loved me.  He even asked the Father if there was any other way, please lets do it. There wasn't and He sacrificed.  Oh how He loves you and me, oh how He loves you and me,  so much that He would lay down His life.
      God make us willing to give up, to lay down, to turnover, to let go of anything that would give us an opportunity to "show someone God loves them."  I challenge you to look for opportunities to sacrifice.  It is amazing how he can turn sacrifice into blessing.  JOIN THE JOURNEY and share your talents, letting the world know God loves them.

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