Wednesday, March 21, 2012


I am currently re-reading a book from one of my favorite authors, Mathew Kelly. I know it might sound a bit odd to re-read a book, but his books need to be read and re-read. They are really that great. Every time you read through one of his books, you learn many knew things, about yourself, your world, who you are and where you need to grow and change in your life to become the "best-version-of-yourself" as he calls it. The book is called The Seven Levels of Intimacy. I can not highly recommend the book enough. If you are struggling in a relationship or want to learn how to more effectively communicate with others, this is the book for you. This is a book which will challenge you to grow, hard sometimes, but a good thing, a necessary thing.

In Chapter Five, at the end he speaks about what life is really about. We might have our own ideas, but Matthew says life is about love. I would have to agree with him 100%. We all want to be selflessly loved in this life. We also want to give love, it should ALWAYS be selfless. Obligatory love needs to disappear from our lives, easier said than done. When we are loved and give love, our worlds are a happier place, things just do not seem to be as bad. We can make it through those hard times when we have someone's unconditional love beside us.

What is hindering us from truly being able to love?
One of the first things, in my opinion, is obligatory love. The, I will only love some one if they love me like this. Or, I will love them if they give me to right gift. I will love them is they treat me the way I see fit. I will only love you if you stay with in my little box, step out and my love is finished. Selfish love, or strings attached love are other ways to look at this. We need to love others because God has blessed them with life. He loves them, so we need to love them as well. This does not mean we have to like them, just love them. I know this is very difficult to do some days. Along with you, probably, I have people in my life I wished I did not have to love. In the end, I hope I am a better person for doing so. It is difficult. A grace I have to pray for frequently. This does not only apply to people we do not want to love. The most important people we must stop this with, is those closets to us, our spouse, parents, our children, close friends and other family members. As Matthew would call them our primary and high priority secondary relationships.

We need to love them for who they are as a person. The gifts they bring into your life and the relationship. When we can begin to love selflessly, the small things they do, are just that, small. When your husband leaves his socks all over the house, or does not close doors behind him, your children have to change their clothes five times and leave them on the floor, whatever those announces are, they become miniscule because you love this person so much it does not matter.  If you are having a difficult time with this, write down all of the things you love about this person. See how you feel as you write. Every time they begin to drive you up a wall again, take that love letter back out and read it. Selfless love will change your live.

While I was reading these few paragraphs from Matthew, what hit me was this: If we do not first love ourselves, how are we to love or allow anyone else to love us? To me, this is very important. If we can not love ourselves, how can any one else love us? How can we allow any one else to love us? We need to learn to love ourselves. We live in a society that tells us constantly we are not good enough, a place which does not foster self love, but self hatred. If you want to truly be free to love others, selflessly love others, you must learn to love yourself first. I do not mean in a narcissistic way, full of ourselves or prideful. I am talking about true love of self. Being able to admit to our failures and short comings, but also be able to have confidence in the gift's God has blessed us with.

How you do that? I am not entirely sure? This is a processes I am learning myself. I am not sure how, but I know this is something we need to do. We can not love until we love our whole self that God made.

Saving the world one stick of butter at a time
God bless you with strength in this journey of true love,

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