God-Sized Dreams Team
Then God said, ‘Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.’ So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
-Genesis 1: 26-27
Father. Son. Holy Spirit. Though God is one, He is a community within Himself–and we are made in His image. Yet, since we are only human, each person can only be one being. Alone, we cannot satisfy the community that we were built to experience.
That’s why we need each other.
We are wired to fulfill the company-seeking heart we’ve been given.
As a recovering self-sufficient perfectionist who finds comfort in solitude, that was a tough pill to swallow. I choked and coughed it back up several times before I could accept it. If anything is to be done right, I lied to myself, I need to be the one who does it. Then I’d shack myself up in my little hole and attend to Labor rather than Love. If I wasn’t being productive, I wasn’t being good enough.
I don’t know if you know Labor, but he is bossy. He’s dissatisfied with check marks even when I want to celebrate them. He simply looks at you, unimpressed, then condescendingly demands more. And I tirelessly obeyed for fear of being inadequate.
I imagine God smiled when it was finally time to introduce me to the man whom He’d created for me. A man who finds joy in serving, not because he delights in accomplishing tasks but because he loves helping people. A man who locks the passenger-side car door until he can get there to unlock it and swing it open. A man who knows how to repair everything and also cooks and folds fitted sheets better than his wife. (Let’s be real, his wife has no idea how to even begin folding a fitted sheet.) Not to mention, he’s also a man who refuses to let his wife take out the trash.
At first, all of that was hard for me to digest. But I soon realized it was not a pill I was swallowing.
It was my pride. And, I discovered, that can be very medicinal.
My husband wasn’t checking off tasks on my to-do list out of obligation or so that he could feel more accomplished. He was doing it all to care for me with a heart that hungers to serve and please God.
My husband is, above all, a man who shows me God’s unconditional love every moment of every day.
But I’ve found he’s better and much more consistent at giving me love than I am at accepting it. After all, to be offered such an invaluable, unearned gift can be pretty difficult to believe. So when I first told him I wanted to be a writer, the blunt edge of guilt rammed me in the gut. I was already a high school basketball coach and my nagging brain harshly reminded me that I wouldn’t be financially contributing to our family if I became a writer, too. Which isn’t the news a newly married man in his mid-twenties would probably want to hear.
Yet, as always, love sounded like my husband’s voice.
“Kelsey, you’re a great writer and it’s what you love to do. I wouldn’t even want to ask you to do anything else.”
Through his words, I had the courage to pursue writing positions for two local magazines and an online publication about faith–making me, for the first time in my life, a professional and published writer. Plus, I reached out to other writers in the area and established a group of terrifically supportive friends. They, along with my husband, are absolutely essential in my quest to become a writer. And none of that would have ever happened if I had listened to Labor instead of Love.
Don’t get me wrong, there are still days when I feel like a selfish money pit and I apologize to my husband for having to be stuck with me. Sure, writing and coaching high school girls basketball are my passions in life, but they aren’t the most lucrative positions. And yet, my husband is always there to reign in his crazy wife and remind her that she is loved just as who she is.
That’s not only community, that’s God. And I have learned that I desperately need them both.