lessons in love::
so i've been slammed with the reality of love lately and what it means. i in no means grasp the complexity of this human relational action, but i'm starting to experience lessons in its reality...so here's a start to the lessons

so check this out, the kids above...my nephews. first try and take a look at them and not get overwhelmed with joy [i realize i'm biased but come on]. i've realized as of recently that i love these two guys more than i ever imagined possible. now i know it is required in some sense of an uncle to love his nephews, but i'm just starting to see the reality of this. over the christmas break i got to spend two full weeks with them [cayden on the left--deacon on the right], and for the first time the oldest one now has a concious recognition of my uncleness. the first time that cayden said uncle tim, sit next to me i almost lost it. now i know this is very isignificant to many of you, but living 700 miles from them is hard. here i am in texas and they are currently growing up and experiencing life without a concious realization of who their uncle is. after all they have tons of uncles surrounding them on a constant basis: friends of jamie and aaron take on that role to them. so for that recognition to exist is huge for me. [stick with me for a sec] moving on, i was talking to my sister-in-law shortly after returning from the break and all she simply said was thank you for loving my boys so much, it's very evident. are you kidding me? so of course i lost it again with the realization that (1) yes it is true, and (2) i'm so glad its evident. then two nights ago we're talking on-line again and she was saying how cayden was asking for uncle tim's orange juice. [this is comical only because one night there was a bottle of orange gatorade sitting on the counter and he asked for some. i became aware that it wasn't a good option for him so i simply told him it was mine and then i put it away and that was it] but now 2 weeks later somethign triggered that thought and made him remember that. ok, i'm digressing so let me get to the point asap.

the truth is that we [and i emphasize the i in we] have often completely neutered the term love out of its beauty and glory. just in the last week i can think of the things i've claimed to love: panara bread, coffee, the movie magnolia, when it rains at night, snow patrol, my new jeans [thanks jimmie for the recomendation], fresh mozzarella, and the list goes on. so i say man i love my nephews, or perhaps i love my family or i can't wait to fall in love with that girl God has for me or most importantly i love God. yet in the same line of conversation i can easily mention how much i love the notes and melodies played by a group of guys from iceland or the flavor of the sweet necter of a good cup of coffee? here's some recomendations of what love is to the world:

love is watching someone die -- ben gibbard [what sarah said]

at the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet -- plato

if you have love, you don't need to have anything else, and if you don't have it, it doesn't matter what else you have -- james m. barrie

love is a friendship set to music -- e. joseph cossman

Love is passion, obsession, someone you can't live without. If you don't start with that, what are you going to end up with? Fall head over heels. I say find someone you can love like crazy and who'll love you the same way back. And how do you find him? Forget your head and listen to your heart. -- anthony hopkins [meet joe black]

let's go with this for a second. let's examine love as passion, obsession, something you can't live without [here's where it gets painful]. let's say love is what we spend our time with, what consumes us, what we talk about. [time for self reflection]. now i can honestly say i love my nephews. anyone that spends time with me knows that i talk about them all the time [what can i say? i love having children vicariously through my brother and his wife]. always showing pictures and videos from jamie's blog. it might be annoying to you, but love can't be held in. when you love something/someone you want everyone to know and for them to love them back. take music for instance. when you find that new band that simply rocks your face off, what do you do? do you stay silent about it? do you listen to it by yourself and that's it? no way. you're texting your friends telling them,
dude you have to check out this band. we all do that with so many things in life: music, food, lesson learned, relationships...

but when's the last time i have been obessesed, passionate, overwhelmed with my creator that his words and love spews from my pores? check this out, some guys come to jesus and try and get him in trouble by getting him to single out what the greatest commandment is. his simple answer??? come close for this one....love.

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength...Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.

so what the most important thing? love. we [i] have to figure out what this love is about. what does it mean to love god with all our soul, mind and strenght? what does it truly mean to love my neighbor as myself? how is this done? what does this look like to truly experiend love the way it was intended to be?

may we seek to love god, people and ourselves more and more everyday. may we seek to throw off our useless passions of this world and discover what it means to be obsessed and passionate for our creator, our savior...

more to come my friends...