Monday, March 05, 2012

Of Wise Investments

So. When Lennon The Cat passed away, I recalled this saying:

"Never invest more than you can afford to lose."

Why? Because I realized I'd invested more love into that silly cat than I should have. I'd allowed him to capture my heart and his death devastated me, that is, until God had to go and give me a 'vision' of Lennon as I told you about here. And really, after that, I felt much comfort. (Clearly, God is so much better to me than I deserve.)

Anyway, so there I was after Lennon's death, a soppy, crying mess, thinking of that saying above, and I vowed that never again would I invest more than I could emotionally afford to lose into anything, especially a darn ol' cat.

But then, uh-oh.... Along came Daniel. Man, that silly cat is totally capturing my heart. Gah.

I mean, I'll be asleep at night then he'll jump up on my bed, crawl beneath the blanket then place his head right on the pillow in front of my face. Oh man, how can you not adore a cat like that? And he can practically talk--makes these throaty noises in response to our questions and greets us when we walk into the room. Makes us feel adored.  And more.

But don't worry, I'm still trying to guard my heart to a point, to give Daniel only parts of me which will emotionally survive in a healthy way when he passes away some day.

And you know? I'm that way with people, too. I mean, in the past I often invested too much of my whole emotional being into friends, especially, then when those friends would leave or do or say something which I perceived as being mean or non-caring, I'd be blown away. Down for days and either hurt or mad or both.

And who needs that?

But for the past decade or so, I've learned from Jesus' example in these two verses from John 2:23,24:

"Because of the miraculous signs Jesus did in Jerusalem at the Passover celebration, many began to trust in him. But Jesus didn’t trust them, because he knew human nature."  (from the New Living Translation)

And ok, those verses are saying way too much for me to cover in one blog post, but I'll just say this: Jesus knew human nature really well and he knew that some of those people would change for the better after they saw His miracles, but others wouldn't. Some would still want Him tomorrow, but others would go right back to the way they'd been living. 

He knew human nature can be so very, very iffy.

And you know? I actually like to recall those verses when it comes to my friendships, for they allow me to give my friends some slack. Some room to mess-up and make mistakes, even ones which will affect me. To me, that verse says, "Don't invest more into people than you can afford to lose. Yes, give to them and love them deeply--but never forget! They are as human and imperfect as you are. Give only as much of your heart to them as it can handle safely."

And there is freedom in that! That kind of thinking removes any dark forebodings of future friendship disasters, especially when we've been careful to keep Jesus as our first and most important friend. When that's true, then we can afford to emotionally allow our friends to leave should they choose to for awhile or for forever and we can also forgive them more easily when they hurt or ignore us.

Why? Because this one thing I know for certain: With Jesus in His rightful Number One spot, everything will be ok, truly ok, inside of us, even should the whole world around us poof! Disappear. As long as He's left standing beside us, all shall be well.


"Above all else, guard your heart, for it determines the course of your life." Proverbs 4:23


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