This past Tuesday evening I left Johnstown at 8:38 p.m. I know the exact time because I have been making this commute every Tuesday for the last four months and I know it takes me 1 hour and 25 minutes to get home at that time of night. This particular drive was challenging because I was pretty tired. I have been so busy recently that I hadn’t had the chance to rest and recharge over the weekend. I was thinking I would touch base with Maria and Josh when I got home and then head straight to bed because I had to leave early the next morning for a day of training. As I drove I sensed how irritable and anxious I was and I was just hoping to get 6 or 7 hours of sleep.
I had no idea what was in store for me when I got home.
Joshua is a senior in high school and we were looking forward to attending his National Honor Society ceremony the next evening. He is the president of NHS and therefore gets to give the speech on Leadership. When I arrived home at 10:06 p.m. he asked me to look the speech over. I was happy to do so and quickly forgot how tired I was.
Joshua is an excellent writer and was excited about the theme he had come up with for the speech. He read through the speech and I gave him a few suggestions to fine-tune it. Before we knew it, time got away from us and I realized it was 12:15 a.m. I helped Josh to print out the speech on my printer and as I turned to head to bed he opened up his arms and gave me a big hug. I’m not a “hugger” but I really embraced this one!! Josh said, “Thank you and I love you.” My heart melted! Even as I type this I am still filled with a love that defies description.
While some of this love is emotionally driven there is a depth to it that goes beyond the wonderful feelings I’m experiencing. As a parent I find it hard to describe how much I really love all three of my children. Here is the amazing thing; I believe that is where God’s love for you and me begins. In this week’s Gospel we hear of the love between Father and Son and Jesus gives us His explanation of how that love extends to and through us.
Jesus said to his disciples: “As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy might be complete. This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father. It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. This I command you: love one another.” John 15:9-17
Joshua’s speech was a hit! With a title of Leadership Is Like Pizza, how could it not be!?! What a joy it was to see our son shine. I really love that kid!
And imagine this, your Father in heaven loves you and me, His kids, even more! Now go as His Son commanded, and love one another!