I distinctly remember a phone call to my dad when I was a child. The circumstances around the call elude me, but I remember ending the conversation with "I love you." And I remember saying it because it wasn't said often in our home and I wanted to change that. So I did.
From that point onward, I said it when I left the house, when I went to bed, any time it suited the situation. I said it to my mom and brothers, too. And they started to say it back. It became part of who we were. Are.
Over the years, I've learned to say it to friends. You never know when will be the last time you see that person, so if you love them, why not let them know? Now.
And this all came to mind tonight as I was saying good night to my son. I must have told him I love him five or six times. And the thought struck me that if you say it too often, it loses its meaning.
But does it? Does it really?
Because in that same moment, the reasoning hit me as tears stung my eyes...
"I say it a lot because I can't say it enough."
I could say those three little words for the rest of my life and not be able to tell him how very much I love him. And that goes for my husband, my girls, my brothers, my mom, and the slew of other people who mean the world to me.
Love may have different shades. I love God differently than I love my husband. And I love him differently than I love my children. And I love them differently than I love my mom. And my friends. But that doesn't change the face that love is still in my heart for the person on the receiving end of my words.
After all...1 John 4:19 reminds us, "We love because he first loved us."
So unashamedly, unreservedly, unrelentingly, I tell you...I love you. I love you. I. Love. You. I'm grateful for you. And I love you. Always and forever.
I say it a lot because I can't say it enough.
I've been performing with a fantastic theatre group for the last few years. My children have also participated from time to time. This spring, we're performing Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella (the 1957 version), and my entire family is involved, including my husband!
As an exercise to help the cast bond and to help us think about the magic we're about to create on stage, one of the directors had us pass around a rain stick and offer a single word that came to mind when thinking about this classic story. So many great words--joy, magic, love. All concepts neatly wrapped up in this two-hour production. And when the stick was passed to my former-pastor husband, he chose the word redemption.
That has stuck with me. And I started thinking about Cinderella in terms of redemption and God's grace. Much like the girl in her own little corner, we're all sinners, stained and dirty. Isolated and alone. Dreaming of something better. Then along comes our magical Fairy Godmother...the choice to believe and follow Christ...transforming us into something beautiful. We meet the Prince (a charming Prince!), and there is a celebration. As we walk with him, "we are dancing, we are flying, and He's taking me back to the skies!" And here's what I love...we may fall away. Midnight comes, plunging us into doubt and fear. And yet our Prince pursues us. He's relentless, searching for His love until He finds us again. And then, we become His bride.
Isn't that a beautiful picture?
The little girl in me always wanted a Cinderella moment. Who knew a fairy tale could come true in such a powerful way?
Award-winning sci-fi author * Christ follower, wife, and mom * broadcast content producer. And yes, I am a real duchess. http://amzn.to/2eLTlH3