by Pam Farrel
For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many. Mark 10:45 NASB
Jesus was a good son. Bill and I recognize a good son, because we enjoy having three good sons. A good son carries out the will of his father. A good son represents his family well and moves the family legacy forward. Good daughters do the same. Good daughters represent their family well. We meet people each week and many of them are those who value the heritage that have been handed to them and build upon that solid foundation.
Within minutes of meeting John and Barb, we knew they had an unusual love. Barb found it easy to gush about how blessed and fortunate she found it to be married to John. John found it easy to compliment a wife he so obviously cherished. They have been married about the same amount of time as Bill and I, for over three decades! When I asked Barb the secret of their long lasting love, she said, “My husband forgives easily. He is full of grace, mercy and forgiveness.”
When we asked John the same question, his reply was similar, “My wife knows how to keep giving love when people are hard to love. She loves unconditionally and tenaciously.” Notice it is really just two sides of the same coin: he loves without limits and she is limitless in her love.
They are the owners of Morning Star Dairy. They live in the home where John was raised. John had the privilege of watching his parents live a life of love. Love is a rich heritage on Morning Star Dairy. John describes his mother as a saint who loved lavishly, never uttered a harsh word, and had a servant’s heart. Her heart of love was often expressed toward her husband as she darted about the kitchen waiting on him with an affectionately, “On the way, Daddy Baby”.
And that legacy of love continues as one will sometimes hear Barb call John, “Daddy” and with a twinkle in his eye and sheepish grin he will tease back, “That’s Daddy BABY to you.”
How does one go about building a legacy of love that passes from generation to generation? Follow John and Barb’s pattern and the example they followed in their parents and simply out-serve each another.
Love is an action verb and it is best expressed with a servant’s attitude. What is a servant’s attitude? Phil 2: captures it best when it simply says:
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant . . .” (Phil 2:3-7 NIV).
Loving well is simply a matter of maintaining a “you first” attitude toward others. The plus side of having a servant’s attitude is that your children are watching. Perhaps you will be laying a foundation of a family that all seek to out love the other!
Lord, help me not seek my own interests as the first priority but help me look out for my mate’s needs. Give me your same heart and attitude Jesus. Help us lay a legacy of love. Amen
About the author: Pam Farrel is the author of 45 books and the Co-Director of Love-Wise.com. She has been seeking to “out love” her husband, Bill for 38 years of marriage. Discover resources to help you love well at www.Love-Wise.com
Join the conversation: How do you employ a “you first” attitude in your relationships?