Are you a chink in the love chain sometimes? I am. 

So I made a totally selfish decision this week.  Let me tell you about it.  Ted’s oldest daughter goes to high school and when she is with us, we have to drive her there or pick her up.  When she is with her mom, her mom does that job.  There is no school bus.  

However, in the rare circumstances that none of us are available, we have said she can take the city bus – like lots of kids in that school – to her mom’s.  She has done this before and is fully capable. 

Now, in MY world, I massage Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday every week and then I try to use all of Thursday and Friday to work on my writing while the kids are at school.  That’s my (keyword)  plan and I like to stick to it.

Enter this week.  Due to unforeseen circumstances, Ted told me that we would be responsible for getting Avery to school on Thursday.  

This didn’t make sense to me since she could just take the bus so when Ted relayed this information, I naturally asked, “What about the bus?”

Ted had forgotten about this option and suggested it to her.  Avery was not a fan of this idea. When I learned that Ted had agreed to still have one of us drive her on Thursday, I got so mad.  SO mad. 

Here are the exact words of my thoughts for about 24 hours.  “Unbelievable.  He doesn’t stand up to Avery but he’d be a lot tougher on Summer…less sympathetic and force the issue.  

But here he says yes.  And THEN, he will get an inspection so now the driving falls on me and interrupts MY day and MY writing time!  And all of this could be avoided if she just took the stupid bus!”  End quote.

I had gently (no sarcasm there, honestly) said to Ted that I thought he was giving her a pass and that he would treat Summer differently in the same situation. 

I shared my frustration but he went ahead with this decision anyways and I proceeded to shut him out. 

A chink in the love chain.

a chink in the love chain
a chink in the love chain

Let me say something here about blending families, if you have never had to do so.  

I LOVE my stepkids and Ted LOVES Summer.  NO QUESTION AT ALL.  But I would be lying if I said that my love for Summer is the exact same way that I love his kids.  Nope, it just isn’t true.  I’m harsher with his kids and I believe he is tougher on Summer.  

And you know what?  That’s ok. 

You are not to blame if you can’t love your stepkids in the exact way you love your own flesh and blood.  I’ve had to learn to love Ted’s kids…I never had to learn to love Summer.  She came out and BOOM.  I loved her.  

Anyways, I stewed about this for a while and it came to a head the next day when I just voiced why I was frustrated.  Then I left the conversation and he left for work. 

I proceeded to go sit on the couch to have a quiet time…dang quiet times. They always get you. 

It hit me. Ted LOVES Avery…to death!  As he should and you know what?  That is one reason why I fell in love with him.  He is an AMAZING dad and loves his kids so so much.  

With me selfishly trying to protect my writing time – in which I try to focus on God and His love, ironically – I was being unloving to Ted and Avery.  

I was stopping Ted from loving Avery in the way he wanted to. A chink in the love chain.

How was I being loving by stopping him from loving?  

I took out my phone and texted him.  “You love your daughter and that is one of the reasons I love you.  You should be able to love her in the ways you want to.  I will take her to school tomorrow.  I want to take her because I want to support how you love her.  I’m so so sorry.”  

As I have thought about this whole situation, 1John 3:16-18 came to mind.

“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. 

And we ought to lay down our lives for our brother. 

If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? 

Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.”

There were two things I could have done better here.  First, I could have loved Avery more and been willing to sacrifice some time from WRITING about love to actually loving someone who needed it. 

Second, I needed to lay down my life and my ‘Thursday routine’ for Ted and for Avery.  I never want to be the chink in the chain that stops the love from flowing and I was being a chink in Ted’s love chain. 

A chink in the love chain

I think the world is lacking in love.  I feel this is even true with the pandemic.  We can all get caught up in what suits us best and what makes us have a better situation but we need to look beyond this, I think. 

Whenever Summer goes to cross the street she stands right on the edge of our driveway and the street, even if a car is coming.  

I’ve often said to her, “Summer you need to stand further back and make the driver feel safe.  YOU know you won’t cross in front of them but THEY don’t know that.  So stand back to make them feel safe.”  

I think we could put the word ‘loved’ in there to replace the word ‘safe’.  Do what you need to do to make others feel loved.  Don’t be a chink in the love chain.  

Driving Avery was going to be an inconvenience.  I’d have to sacrifice time but in the end, would it have been worth it?  Absolutely.  

Sometimes love requires us to sacrifice and to put our needs second for a while.  Sometimes we need to help others so they can keep loving others.  

But will it be worth it?  Absolutely.

 In a world that needs so much more love in it, let’s try not to be a chink in the love chain.
a chink in the love chain
a chink in the love chain

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