Friday, April 9, 2010

Hard Truths That Hit Close To Home

A word from our guest blogger Amy Vance.

Have you ever been hit with a really hard truth from God? I'm sure we all have. I'm in the process of learning a difficult lesson about something that hits very close to home. In my home if you want to be technical about it. Let me start at the beginning...

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my family! I have a wonderful husband that I'm very much in love with. I have a beautiful little girl that I absolutely adore. I think about them all the time: 1st thing in the morning, all day long and as I'm falling asleep at night. I want to make sure they have everything they need to make life as good and easy for them as possible. I want our home to be a place they enjoy being-safe, clean, and comfortable. I want them to eat well and have the best food they can get (within my abilities, of course) and for them to be healthy and happy. I think about all the best ways to teach my daughter to be kind, loving, respectful and to one day follow after Jesus. I think about how to make time for my husband, to be attentive to him and let him know that in the midst of everything he is loved. After all, I'm a mom. That's our job. We think about these things (and so many others)-ALL THE TIME, ALL DAY, EVERYDAY. And when we aren't thinking about keeping them happy, healthy, well-fed, safe and loved we're worrying about what else we could have done better or differently. And when that's done we start thinking about what they'll need for tomorrow! Am I speaking to anyone, here?

This is where the difficult lesson comes in...I'll do my best to explain. I read a passage of scripture out of Matthew that really stepped on my toes. Matthew 10:37 says, "The person who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me." Ouch! Then I came across Luke 14:26 which says, "If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his own father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters-yes, and even his own life-he cannot be My disciple." What did He say? Hate my family?!? Why would he say that? Aren't we supposed to love others? And wouldn't that especially apply to our very own families?

Here's the deal. The amount of love we have for our families should look like hate compared to the love we have for Christ. He wants all of us. He wants us to make Him our very top priority. And the fact of the matter is, the Bible says that God is Love. And that's not love as a verb, but love as a noun. He IS love. Without Him there is no love at all. But that's not where the lesson has ended for me. I started thinking about how I had put my family in the position that God should have been in my life: #1. And you know what the cold, hard fact about that is? I've made my own family into an idol that I had begun to worship. No, I haven't built an alter to my husband or my daughter in my basement or anything. But they had consumed more of my thought life, my time and my affections than God had.

Now, remember what I said before about God being love? The crazy thing about all of this is that by putting my family first I've actually robbed them of the most spectacular love I could ever give them. You see, when I put God first in my life, He fills me and He gives me a capacity to love far more than I could ever do on my own. What a weird cycle: by esteeming my family and not the Father, I've actually taken away from the love I could be giving them.

So my mission, that I'm choosing to accept, is to love my family the way God intended me to love them. I'm trying to put them in their proper place in my heart and that is right after my Savior!
Amy resides in a suburb of Kansas City. She is a Bible study teacher, wife of a pastor, and mother of one sweet little girl!


  1. Great information...true, it hits close to home and I am sure that every parent in the world can understand the feeling. I have had similar experiences, yes, it has taken the gentle pushing of God a few times to get His point across...what can I say? I'm a slow learner! But every time I screw up, God just pulls me in a little closer. Thanks for the article, it was great food for thought today.

  2. Way to go, Amy! I think every mom (and grandma!) can identify! (including myself!!!) What's sad is that some people never believe or understand that danger. And the children are the ones that are deprived! I'm SO thankful for God's mercy and grace!!!