31 Lessons: 13. Err on the Side of Love

A Sunday school teacher of mine passed away a few years ago. When he died, my pastor commented that so many remembered a common refrain spoken from Mr. Jones’ mouth and echoed by his life: Err on the side of love.

Even several years later I still remember sitting in the church pew, struck by the simplicity and power of that statement.

What would that look like, in my life?



I have come back to this, again and again and again.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about choices and decisions and the everyday battles I wage. About how some decisions and situations can plague you, and there is no perfect knowledge. No perfect way of knowing. No perfect way to emerge from this life unscathed.

May my actions, may my words, may my choice always be on the side of love. Though I may ever be at fault, may I always be at fault on the side of love. 

In plenty and in want.

When I am fearful, but especially when I am brave.

When I am hungry, and when I am abundantly satisfied.

In the words I speak to tender hearts.

When facing challenge and when celebrating victory.

In my friendships, in my workplace, in the long Walmart check-out line.

Whenever my wallet is open, but especially when it is closed.

When I am rejected, when I am forgotten, when I am left behind.

In times of stress or sorrow.

In times of blind delight.

While big eyes and little hands await affirmation, reproach, discipline, and delight.

When I have a choice of what to say.

When words rush out of my mouth.

When I feel the Spirit of The Lord calling me to places and people beyond my trust.

In moments great and moments small.

In my choice and in my voice, all the days of my life.




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