Wanting Their Best


from the lovely Lisa Leonard 2013 calendar…

“True Love Grows Organically”

Have you ever had a moment when you suddenly realized you cling to love for another vs. jealousy?  A situation where a friend or loved one shared peace, a new understanding, an achievement or goal reached and you truly celebrated with and for them?

I know it is not easy.  Some days are downright painful.  I watch friends who struggle with fertility, celebrate with another who is newly pregnant.  I felt the sting of singlehood for 29 years as many friends met spouses and married.  Frustration rose inside as I witnessed others effortlessly balance work, parenthood and marriage while I struggled to keep all of the balls in the air.  The scenarios and opportunities for jealousy, disappointment, struggle and loneliness are endless.  Despite the life-changing gift of true community and friendship, there lays a challenge.  The comparing.  The longings.  The “why not me?!” or “why me?!” questions.

And then once in awhile perspective and time and circumstance offer the gift of seeing these situations anew.  Today I had one of these watershed moments.  I had the chance to talk to a dear friend and was given a reminder.  One of those, “if we’d known ten years ago where God would have us now, would we have believed it?!?”

Ten years ago……my mind raced back a bit.  Did a little math and I suddenly realized what was going on 10 years ago.  10 years ago this week, my husband had a table saw accident and partially severed one finger and severely injured the other and his thumb while working on a cabinet project.  It is a long story, but it seemed to become the catapult into our relationship.  A friendship had existed for over 8 years, but it took a table saw, a ride in the emergency helicopter and some heavy drugs to give him clarity about our connection.  Upon realizing that this week marked the 10 year “anniversary” of our relationship beginning, I went and dug out a binder of emails I put together when I closed my “Hotmail” email account and opened up my “Gmail” account.  I had printed out the emails that went back and forth between Matt and I, as well as his parents and I, pastors, friends, etc. as the whole thing unfolded.  Worries about his health and surgery.  Wonderings and “HOLY LORD ABOVE” emails between friends and I as I sensed he was about to say “let’s ‘date’!”  {guffaw guffaw}  Notes back and forth discussing ministry and seminary.

I marvel at the way relationships naturally develop depth over time.  I read carefully crafted words by me.  Tentative questions asked.  Notes painstakingly typed by Matt as he recovered from hand surgery, describing the recovery and Vicodin survival.  I see echos of themes we still discuss today and yet realize how much we have experienced in the 10 years that have passed.

Is the love we feel for friends, for spouses, for our children a love that is different over time?  Does that love shift, change, ebb, flow and grow?  What happens when we force it?  Or love out of obligation or commitment or guilt?  I do not have all the answers, nor do most of those in ministry or psychology professors from college or writers of the sociology of society. Love is organic.  It moves in ways that surprise and amaze, sometimes painful and hard.  And today, I am feeling especially grateful for the ways love, relationships and community, grown organically, have taught me to move from spaces of jealousy—or at least HONESTY about jealousy—into places of love.

So raise your spoonful of Mac-n-Cheese….


And holler out a big “YAAAHOOOOO!”…..


….for the ways God, the giver of True Love, is meeting us today.


A few of mine today:

Celebrating the events of ten years ago in my life {even though it involved a major injury for Matty!}

Celebrating with Maggie Whitley of Gussy Sews in the birth of Maxwell Zackary Whitley

Celebrating with Micha Boyett as she announces her new book deals and the eventual publication of “The Mama Monk”

and Celebrating with our dear friends, the Silas’ at the birth of their twin girls.


Found this piece of paper in the previously mentioned “binder of emails”….it is Matt’s notes to send me flowers in my classroom to commemorate the start to our relationship.  

Small things, notes for a florist, can be wonderful touchstones of history (and memory of the uproar and upheaval those flowers caused amongst my thirty-one fourth graders that day….)

2 thoughts on “Wanting Their Best

  1. I don,t have your email address on my IPad so you need to send me an email so I can respond. Having a great time with the Armbrusts and just been able to get this to work on wifi. Dad.

    Sent from my iPad

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