The Best I Can Do

Agape This week I think I want to revisit the topic of love based on two things. One, a comment that my friend James left last week – and two, some study that I’m doing in John 21. The question is, “Is it alright if I can’t pull off Agape love?” It’s not that I don’t want to love on the deepest level, but some days, I’m just not there. Oh yes!! I certainly have loved that way before, and I still do at times. But I have to admit, most days that lighter love is the best I can do. 

Don’t get me wrong… it’s still love. It’s not cheap or imitation. I’m genuine in my love – even on those days when I can’t pull off Agape. On those days, I still want what is best for those I care for. I want to do the right things. I want to serve God. I want to love my neighbor. I want to cherish my kids and even want to pet my dog. Having that said, simply because you can’t see it does not mean that agape depth is not there.  

But deep in my soul, at a moments notice, I can find it. It’s like money that you’ve saved back and you don’t use for everyday, but when there is a special need or a great opportunity – it’s there. I’m not saying that agape love shouldn’t be the norm. Perhaps it is the norm more than we think it is. Those who love best often don’t feel they do it well. Those who think they are great at it, usually are not doing as well as they imagine. 

In the mid 90’s, John Mellencamp released a greatest hits album, but he didn’t call it his Greatest Hits. He called it, The Best I Could Do. He didn’t want to claim that any of his songs were great. He was simply saying, “This is the best I could do.” I don’t like it when people pass off their wrongs by saying, “I did the best I could.” But when it comes to love, no one knows the depth of affection we feel within our own souls. We display that affection through the actions and attitudes in private moments not visible to the world. 

In John chapter 21, Jesus asks Peter, “Simon son of John, do you truly agape me?” Peter can’t step up and make that claim. In light of his failures the night of the crucifixion, he couldn’t justify it. But when he said the Jesus, “Yes Lord, you know that I love you” he was saying, “You know my heart and what you see in my heart is the best I can do.” And Jesus accepted it with loving grace. He didn’t question it, didn’t scold him for his weakness, didn’t point out his shortcomings but in return for Peter’s genuine offer of the best love he had to offer, Jesus gave him the care of his most cherished possessions, His little ones. 

I’m just saying that we need to love the best we can and trust that our Lord will accept it with grace and grow it into what we would all like it to be. Love is a heart thing. Don’t beat yourself up for the moments when your love is not what you feel like it should be. Say to the Lord, “You know my heart and how I want to love, today this love that I’m offering is the best I can do.” 

telemicus out

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