Let's face it, we are all influenced by the movies we enjoyed. In fact, you can't get through a movie without at least one romantic scene. Hollywood seems to have a prescription for love that most people follow, and it goes something like this: Find the right person, then fall in love. Pend your hopes and dreams on that person, and if it don't work out, repeat step one by finding another person. I get exhausted just thinking about it! So what is God's prescription for lasting love? Step one: Become the right person to love by becoming an imitator of God. What I mean is, live a life of love as taught in the word of God. Step two: Fix all of your hopes and dreams on Christ. Human being's are weak, needy, and flawed, and undeserving of pending all of our hopes and dreams on. Step three: Wait patiently for your soulmate. You can wait patiently if you love God. The bible explains why we wait patiently and it is because God's love satisfies the human soul. When your identity is with God, you won't need human affection in the same way. I can't speak for you, but between Hollywood's prescription and God's, I choose the easy route-God's prescription. You see, finding someone who really loves you for you is rare in our society. If you become rare by imitating God' love toward others, you are a KEEPER!
I am a parent of two boys and two girls. I discovered years ago that each one is different, and I can see some of their mother and me in each one. Our first child was easy breezy! Because things were going so well, I assumed that my parental skills were tip top-WRONG! With my others kids, I learned what rebellion was all about, and frankly I was ill prepared. I just couldn't handle the level of disobedience that I was confronted with. In desperation I went into my parental power tool box to use fear, intimidation, and shame to control the situation, and it worked for a while. But, when children consistently cross the line of clear boundaries, and purposely break well established rules, you got a PROBLEM! I am embarrassed to tell you this, but I blamed them. That's right! I blamed my teenagers for my inability to see beyond the short term. I learned the hard way that kids will be kids regardless of my rules and regulations. Looking back, I got a lot to make up for. Today I am a wiser parent with the use of my power tool box. I still spend a lot of time going through it, but not to use fear, intimidation, and shame to control the situation. The Word of God has taught me a better way, an easier way, which allows me to take the long view. I learned that when you can't change the behavior, work on changing the heart. Lavishing grace on your kids when you would rather use fear, and forgiving them, when you would rather judge, will change their heart. A changed heart always changes behavior. Now let me be clear, rebellion don't go away over night. It can keep going on, and on, like the "energizer bunny." Instances like that, you might need God to change your heart before you can change their behavior. Rebellious kids will teach you a lot about your heart. This is the point: You must take the long view in your parenting. They will eventually grow up, and your wise parenting will eventually payoff. So don't give up or give in. God is on your side, so stay the course.
If you want to look beyond the horizon, you will need to scale something high enough that will allow you to see beyond the obstruction of your view. In the same way, if you want to rise above the average and mundane challenge and reward, you need to set your sight on things above and not the things below. God's promises are out there on the horizon, just beyond the average and mundane. When you decide to scale to higher heights and deeper depths in his Word and with prayer, you will find waiting, just beyond the horizon, a view that will capture your imagination and you will experience the glory of God on a scale you have not had. Therefore, don't settle for what is in front of you, because that battle has already been won. Set you sights on the highest peak, because that is the place God is calling you to be.