Michel: Unconditional love warms from soul on out

Published 11:45 pm Friday, January 23, 2015

Recess with first graders during the winter was always a challenge.

Whenever the temperature took a plunge, the students ran around the playground, awkwardly trying to balance themselves while wearing extra sweaters covered by bulky coats.

Hands warmed by thick gloves clumsily tugged at hats and played with scarves. I sent my own children to school the same way to protect from the cold despite the time it took to layer the clothing.

After spending a few minutes in the bright sun, the shedding process would begin. No longer needing the many layers which they claimed hindered their play, hats, scarves, gloves and coats were piled onto a nearby bench.

Layers. How many have I worn to protect me from the cold?

Cold not from falling temperatures, but from icy stares, a cold shoulder or a chilly reception.

How many layers of worry, rejection or pride have I put on in an effort to insulate myself?

How bundled up am I in my own insecurities?

How often has the chance of failure caused me to become frozen in fear?

How many barriers do I allow to exist between me and the people in my world?

Rather than continue to be bound by old habits of self-preservation, I seek to find freedom by taking a lesson from the children.

But instead of warming up by running around in the sun (although an appealing idea), I’m going to bask in the love of the Son.

The only thing I really need to be wrapped up in is His unfailing love, which according to Psalm 32:10, surrounds me.

It’s the only layer I need.

When the world around me seems to grow cold, I’m going to allow His unconditional love, continued presence and amazing grace to melt my heart.

Ronny Michel may be reached at rmichel@rtconline.com.