A kindhearted woman gains honor…. (Proverbs 11:16).
My grandmother has a heart that draws people in. Her heart is kind, soft and gentle. She is so full of love that it bursts forth from her heart into nearly everyone she meets. She’s someone I want to be like, but sadly, for many years, her character and kindness were not always something I sought to cultivate.
I used to think that honor was gained by the things I did. By how good I was at the things I excelled at and how many things I could do for God. However, these were shallow and vain attempts to get the applause and affirmation of people. There’s a big difference between getting people to like us, and loving them with kindness that draws them to us, which in turn, causes them to like us. One requires a stage, while the other requires an open heart.
This journey that God has been taking me on has removed the stage so that I could grow a heart that invites people in. I want to be that kind of woman, like my grandma, whose heart is full of love, kindness, and grace. I’ve never met a woman like her. I want people to say that about me when they meet me. I want them to comment not on the things that I do, but what springs forth from my heart to theirs. I want to plant seeds of love and joy everywhere I go for others to experience the love of God.
For many years I scattered seed with the hopes that I could grow something for myself for others to be impressed by. Now, all I long for is a seed of joy and love from my heart to be given to others. This can only be produced by a heart that has been captivated by true love. The love of the Lord Jesus.
If there be any honor I gain, let it be for the sole reason that it gives Christ glory. My grandmother has never sought recognition, but many see her life and admire her for it. I want to be the kind of person who lives in such a way that draws people in. I want to be a living invitation so that others know they can come and share their burdens and I will not turn them away. After all, the point of ministry isn’t about building something great for people to go to. It’s about creating a place for others to join with us as we share time and space together for God’s great glory. It’s about opening up a door, not to some grand building, but a door that joins our hearts to theirs, so that our stories become one as we journey with God together towards His Kingdom.
Lord, let my heart be open to you and your love so that I can give it freely to others. Let your grace fall upon me so that I can extend it to those that I meet. May my life be an open door. I long for others to see Christ lived out in me. I want them to say, look at how that woman loves Jesus and others. Let that be true of me and reveal anything in me that would keep this from being true in my life, in Jesus name, Amen.