Love Defined: Serve

The house is quiet this morning after the boys leave for school. I load the dishwasher and round up laundry. I must get ready for Bible study in a little bit, but now it is too early. There are a lot of things that need doing but this moment won’t allow enough time. So for this small bit of space in the day, all I have to think about is myself—my schedule, my projects, my goals and dreams. 

What a dangerous place to be.
I can get used to this too easily; I’ve always been a solitary one. But see, I am missing someone. And the difference between shared moments and solitary ones sits heavily on my chest. It’s the difference between living self-absorbed and living in love.

Last week, the winds came through and shook the trees free of the calico leaves. Fall’s glory is on the wane around these parts but over the weekend I spent sixteen hours on a bus—up and back—with a bunch of high school kids, heading to the sweetest place on earth. From my back row seat, the hills along the road to Pennsylvania still breathed the fire of beauty. 
A lot of things are like that in life, no? Beauty shines untouchable from far away. But when we get up close we’re able to see the not-so-perfect bits that make up the whole. Living in community, serving one another—it doesn’t always feel so warm and fuzzy. It’s the tree shaken clean, bare and naked against the sky’s blue eye. 
We need to step away to see the beauty. Grief does that—gives a lens to look through at the ordinary moments and see the holy there. Scripture says to love each other earnestly. That when I serve, I serve as one who serves by the strength that God supplies. So that in everythingGod may be glorified. (1 Peter 4:8-11)
Since Allume, my head has been full of branding, and the need to redo my website, and urgency regarding networking, and connections. I’ve been formulating plans. But instead of these things, this morning I will fold the laundry. And I am grateful for the balled up sock that when turned right-side out drops leaf chaff all over the other clean whites. 
I am grateful to love this way—through serving.


  1. Monica Sharman says

    I was at the edge of my seat, watching you turn out that ball of a sock. And then when the leaf chaff rained out…

  2. SimplySurrender says

    I have only begun to unpack the gifts of Allume. Laura, you are so beautiful…in words, in pictures and in real life. Meeting you was a gift most unexpected but cherished!

  3. Sharon O says

    oh redo your website? I like it… and I love your simple yet very deep writing and thoughts and you always challenge me. Hugs to you …

  4. Cheri says

    You are so beautiful! Your words dance with the grace of a prima ballerina. I get so caught up in them . . . even when your speak of bus rides and laundry. I honestly can’t imagine it being any more wonderful! You have a lovely gift. I appreciate you so much!

  5. says

    I think this is the danger of these blogger conferences sometimes. I’m just being honest, I suppose. But the thought of networking and more, more, more just gives me anxiety. And I lose site of the fact that I am just a voice, crying out in the wilderness. Prepare the way…

  6. says

    “And the difference between shared moments and solitary ones sits heavily on my chest.” I know the feeling. So painful but aptly described. God’s comfort to you, friend. You are not as solitary as you feel; may you feel His nearness.

  7. says

    Yes, you are too right, C. I feel God close. Such a sweet comfort. Thank you for all your kindnesses. Lucy Mae had so much fun with her treat ball. Give Ebony a squeeze for me.

  8. says

    It is a very real danger, isn’t it, Jen? We need to keep speaking truth to each other, keep building each other up in love. And keep our eyes focused on the One. That can be done along with market savvyness and all that, but it’s a very slippery slope. We need some kind of heart checks on a regular basis, don’t we? Thinking about that. Chewing on it.

  9. says

    I feel the same! It seems I hit the ground running and life hasn’t slowed for me to catch up. I don’t want to forget all the lovelies of that time, including meeting you! You are a beautiful heart-sister and I treasure your words.

  10. pastordt says

    Laura – t here is just no one quite like you out here, my dear friend. These words are so lovely, they make my teeth hurt (in a very good way). Thank you. And bless you in the grief and the dailyness and all the frantic stuff that’s burbling below.

  11. says

    Well, you just made my day :). And there’s no one quite like you out there either, Diana. Isn’t it a beautiful thing that there is room in this crazy mixed up world for all of our voices? Love to you this day, my friend.

  12. soulstops says

    Oh, Laura…it must seem so different around the house without Lucy Mae…praying God continues to hold you close and comfort you….((hugs))

  13. Katie Oldham says

    I am new here. I’m a widow. A 35 year old one and momma of two lovely little girls. I stand with my arms wide open, gazing up in service through the little things. This writing is so accurately beautiful. Step back to see the plan and greater good that only Gods grace can garner.

  14. says

    Katie, you are most welcome here. Thank you for sharing part of your story with us here. Yes, this is the hard emptying. Oh, bless you on this journey. Just bless you. And so much love along the way.

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