Oh, My Childish Ways

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Just the other day I heard some “happy” news about someone I “love.”

Although I mustered up a heartfelt congratulations what I really was feeling was…ugh…not so pretty.

For a moment, I secretly wished I was a toddler so I could own an award-winning tantrum.

(Picture me beating my fist against the floor and yelling vehemently “It’s not FAIR” and “When’s it going to be MY turn?”)

I know, I know, not very attractive, mature, or Christlike.

And then I was hit with the flood of regret.

Why was my gut response childish? Where was my faith? Where was my hope? Where was my love?

So tonight I’m lingering on this:

What if I speak in the most elegant languages of people or in the exotic languages of the heavenly messengers, but I live without love? Well then, anything I say is like the clanging of brass or a crashing cymbal. What if I have the gift of prophecy, am blessed with knowledge and insight to all the mysteries, or what if my faith is strong enough to scoop a mountain from its bedrock, yet I live without love? If so, I am nothing. I could give all that I have to feed the poor, I could surrender my body to be burned as a martyr, [that I may brag,] but if I do not live in love, I gain nothing by my selfless acts.

Love is patient; love is kind. Love isn’t envious, doesn’t boast, brag or strut about. There’s no arrogance in love; it’s never rude, crude, or indecent – it’s not self-absorbed. Love isn’t easily upset. Love doesn’t tally wrongs or celebrate injustice, but truth – yes, truth – is love’s delight! Love puts up with anything and everything that comes along; it trusts, hopes, and endures no matter what. Love will never be obsolete. Now as far as the prophetic gifts, they will not last; unknown languages will become silent, and the gift of knowledge will no longer be needed. Gifts of knowledge and prophecy are partial at best, at least for now, but when the perfection and fullness of God’s kingdom arrive, all the parts will end. When I was a child, I spoke, thought, and reasoned in childlike ways as we all do. But when I became a man, I left my childish ways behind. For now, we can only see a dim and blurry picture of things, as when we stare into polished metal. I realize that everything I know is only part of the big picture. But one day when the Liberating King arrives, we will see clearly, face-to-face. In that day, I will fully know just as I have been wholly known by God. But know faith, hope, and love remain; these three virtues must characterize our lives. The greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:1-13 (The Voice)

What are you lingering on tonight?

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Lindsey has a sincere love for her precious dogs Molly and Maisy, a good red wine and the Delta Sky Club. She spends her days (and some nights) laboring to end childhood hunger at Feed the Children and to gather, equip and unleash women at IF:Gathering.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Loved this,Lindsey. I’ve had my own fist pounding of late,too. I’m reminded today that God created us each with unique gifts and talents. Your gifts of connection, encouragement, and wisdom are right there for all of us to witness and be blessed by.

  • Hey Lindsey.. you picked one of my favorite passages but probably not for the reasons you think. In a day that we love our families and love our ice cream, I think we take for granted what love means. EVEN when presented with Paul's exhortations of what love looks like.

    This passage is one of those rare ones that I lean on the KJV translation because it adds a little something extra to the thought process. At least for me, anyway. IN the KJV it doesn't use the word love, instead, it uses the word charity. When I contemplate that word it opens up the concept of sacrificial action.

    But I have to say that I am always hit hardest by Faith, Hope, and Love.

    Faith = Actionable Belief based on Experienced Truth
    Hope = Our future trust by which we focus our faith
    Love = Our present response to that faith

    My recent post Cracks in the Church

    • Tony, Love this. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this passage. You have me thinking.

  • i so appreciate your candor on this. i've been ruminating over an internal struggle i have as i watch certain friends. (a convo for you and i, for another day…) i hate it, and i'm not sure how to break free from it…all at the same time.

    your post challenges me to be intentional about what i'm lingering on. i need to fix my heart and mind on a piece of God's truth to get me through my tomorrow. i'm choosing to linger on psalm 119:28 – "my soul is weary…strengthen me with Your Word."

    (naomi called me "lindsey" at dinner tonight. i told her that was a great compliment.)

  • Lindsey,
    Thank you for this post. I know it can be hard because you want to be happy for that person but you wonder when these things will happen to you. I have four siblings and all are married. I've struggled with that in the past. And one of my sister's just had a baby so all four siblings have kids now and I really feel out of place. I just wonder when that will happen for me. I just feel like I'm in such a different place in my life. All of my friends are married or getting married and having kids. It's a difficult thing to handle sometimes. But it sounds like God has blessed you with a wonderful job among other things. God has a specific plan for you now and He has greatness prepared for YOU.
    My recent post A testimony among millions

  • thanks for sharing the love here Lindsey. I've come to the realization recently that love is what it's really all about.

    Jesus said: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Matthew 37-40.

    I seem to be growing in this area as well. I unintentionally use "love" a lot in my posts. Love can be found twice in my blog subtitle!!

    If I'm steering the boat in the right direction, the love in my heart will overcome many of the same challenges you mentioned, recognized and navigated through.
    My recent post The Holy Romans: Chariots on Fire for Jesus

  • Tim

    Lindsey,

    Thank you for this good reminder. I understand these struggles so well, and they are hitting extra hard these days for some reason. I appreciate your good focus, on what it means for us to love others–and we certainly want to rejoice with those who are rejoicing, and we hope they will do the same with us when our turn comes.

    Thank you for your openness and vulnerability on your blog.

    God bless.

    –Tim http://www.timothydeanmills.com

  • As usual, I am right with you. In the midst of so many of my friends getting their hearts desires, I feel stuck. Just yesterday, jealousy reared its ugly green head when I found out that one of my friends now has a company sponsoring her giveaways on her blog. What a silly little thing to get upset about – especially since I don't even want to do giveaways on my blog!

    Each time envy threatens to overtake me, I keep going back to Zephaniah 3:17 "The Lord your God is with you…He will quiet you with His love." And each time when I let Him, He does. But I fuss and fume too much in the mean time.

    Funny thing, as I was thinking about these same things last night…I wrote about love too. Now, it is pretty different than how you did. But I think love is the solution!
    My recent post The Love List

  • A lot of my HS and College friends seem to all be married and at least starting families. Some of them are even on their second marriage. Internally I scream out "Why are they having seconds when I haven't even gotten my firsts?" because ya know, that's the mature response! I struggle most with the girls that never wanted to get married. I went to an all woman's college. We had a lot of strong, powerful women who were going to take on the world and didn't want to be tied down to traditional roles.

    Last night, I stayed unplugged & TV off. One of the things I thought about was how all these "great" romances depicted in books and movies have a lot of chaos and DRAMA. I know that things won't always be smooth sailing, but I'm fairly sure I don't want the roller coaster that is most Romantic Comedies or Novels! I guess it was "Be careful of what you wish for, because you might just get all of it!"

  • I seem to be lingering on the same things… the idea of others seem to be getting ahead of me with great opportunities and the only opportunity I get is a free drink at Starbucks (foursquare mayor ftw).

    You would think I would be happy for others but really I am just jealous… very sad.

    • Watch out….you are going to make me jealous. I don't get free drinks at Starbucks. And actually, the closest one is over an hour away. Yeah, I live in the middle of nowhere. But see, everyone else isn't ahead of you. 🙂
      My recent post The Love List

      • ha, well I guess I got something going for me 🙂

  • This week was I lingering on the fact that, at times, I doubt that God's grace is really sufficient. I demonstrate this through my attitude and my actions. Thankfully I was reminded afresh and anew of the promise of 1 Corinthians 12:9a "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." I needed to be reminded that I rely WAY too much on my OWN strength and I need to give EVERYTHING over to God to handle in HIS strength.

    I wrote a post about this on Tuesday: http://su.pr/1GJXfR

    Thanks for your honest sharing Lindsey!
    My recent post 23 ways to know it's going to be a really bad day

  • Ali

    Oh, I guess I am there with you wanting to throw tantrums all the time. This is a constant struggle for me because I feel like I am missing out on so much, and I want what others have so much of the time. I don't see my own blessings and fortune. I think social media adds to this problem for me because people really exaggerate how great their lives are online–no one wants to admit to feeling down or going through a hard time. I can sympathize with your feelings all too well. Thank you for being honest.

  • Watching my third child grow up, I often think life might actually be easier if we were allowed to express how we really feel about things that make us happy and things that make us uncomfortable or hurt. Babies train their parents on how to provide care.

    At some point, though, the crying and wailing become manipulative and that's when parents need to train their babies. And that's why award-winning tantrums aren't always a great idea. Not because expressing yourself with honest transparency is bad, but because in all likelihood, you'd be doing it for the wrong reasons, and for the wrong effect.

    I want to be more in touch with what hits my joy button and what makes me sad. I just don't want to also express those sentiments without regard to how they will hurt others.

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  • I had my own childish ways this week.

    My recent post Freedom

  • I'm wanting things I cannot have, loving things which are not mine, and dealing with letting go of things which are not to come.

    Thank you for your honesty. Sometimes I feel like Veruca Salt in a world of Charlie's and Grandpa Joe's.
    My recent post toms and tithe…

  • This is a great post, Lindsey. Many times, I've had those same emotions. It helps to know that we're all human and we're all flawed, and we're not alone because many of us have dealt with those same feelings. Thank you for sharing!
    My recent post Where Dreams Come True

  • Have you seen Julie and Julia? There's an amazing scene where Julia Child (unable to have children) gets a letter from her recently married sister announcing a pregnancy. Julia looks up at her husband, says, "I'm so…happy…for her!" and then bursts into tears.

    I've felt like that before. I think it's normal. It's what you do after the reaction (i.e. stay loving) that counts.

  • "It's not self-absorbed." That's my check when I'm outwardly rejoicing and inwardly questioning and throwing a tantrum. Sadly it happens more than I care to admit. For me it's a good check on how content I am with God and what's going on in my life.
    My recent post It Happened Again

  • I guess we're all alike, so none of us should beat ourselves up for having to deal with unwholesome thoughts. You know how good writers have voices that readers hear through their words. Well, our thoughts have voices, too. In my own life, I know that my thoughts that do not come out of love are not from God. So, I go to my Father and I tell Him that I do not trust those thoughts and that I chose to love and to rejoice. Until Christ returns, we are always going to be tempted away from God by some of our thoughts–that's why we have to pull them down. Let's just not fall into the trap of feeling guilty about having those thoughts–Christ died on the cross so that we can overcome them. Overcoming those thoughts means we don't let them stop us from choosing love.

    My recent post #42 THE RETURN OF CHRIST: THE SETTING