Setting intentions in our hearts and in our minds to love others as we gather together for Thanksgiving.
As we prepare for the Holiday season and time with our families and friends, it’s typical to wrap up a few last items at work, run to the grocery store to buy the essentials, then turn to our family favorite recipes to begin prepping for that special meal.
But, what if we took a moment before we start that sprint to prepare ourselves. To fill ourselves up first to be our best and give our best to those we love the most? To take a few moments to set our hearts and minds with intentions to love on others throughout this special time regardless of any situation or circumstance that may arise.
Love, the first and greatest commandment—we all need and desire to be loved.
Matthew 22:37-38 Jesus replied; “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”.
Fill yourself up with love first. Recognize how much you are loved by God who created you in his image. Special and unique.
1 John 4:16 “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.
1 John 4:7 “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.”
Romans 5:5 “God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us”
Because God’s love is so powerful, we can love others.
Guard your heart
What does it mean to guard your heart? To me, it means setting the intention not to take things too personally and to acknowledge that everything good comes from God. Do not look for validation, acceptance, or unconditional love from anyone else. There is not one of us that is perfect and we all make mistakes along the way. Be forgiving. When we don’t guard our hearts, we are leaving an open door for hurt feelings, misunderstandings, and impacted or severed relationships.
Proverbs 4:23 “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.”
James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above coming down from the father of the heavenly lights who does not change like shifting shadows.”
Luke 6:31 “Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
Ephesians 4:32 “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
Ask the Lord to help you guard your heart and to not allow yourself to get sensitive in the circumstance. Focus on his love for you, the fact that his powerful love enables you to love others (regardless of their actions), and not change your behaviors based on their behaviors.