Who’s your favorite romance hero?
I know who mine is. His name’s Grady, and he’s the hero of Just Dessert. For the longest time, when asked who my favorite hero was, I’d say, “Whichever one I just wrote.” Then I met Grady, and no matter how hard I’ve looked, no one has measured up since.
Why? What’s so special about him?
Well…Grady brings out the best in everyone around him. He is strong when a lot of people would crumble with weakness. He’s patient when I’d be screaming my frustration. He is protective of others when most people would care only about protecting themselves. Grady doesn’t back down in the face of a hysterical woman. He hugs people when they’re hurting and isn’t afraid to be seen holding the hand of a little girl. Nor is he afraid to step into the middle of the teenage brothers’ brawl to shake some sense into them.
Now comes that dreaded moment when I have to reflect the mirror back on myself to see if I measure up. Do I love people in a way that strengthens them? Are people better for knowing me?
Or does spending time with me make others want to crawl into a dank dark hole in the ground and wish I’d never spoken? Do I love people with affirmation? Or do I point out their faults and tear them down with backhanded compliments? (“Oh, you look so lovely today. Did you get that giant wart on your forehead removed?” or “Just talking to you makes me feel better. You always remind me how much worse off my own life could be.”)
I’d love to tell you that I pour strength and goodness into others when I love them. I don’t. Not always, anyway. But that’s who I want to be. That’s who I strive to be. That’s the kind of lover I want to be to the people who have allowed me the privilege of having access to their hearts.
So today, three cheers for anyone who builds others up, who encourages and edifies, who loves in a way that weaves strength and courage into the lives of others. If that’s you – YOU ROCK! And if that’s not you – today’s a really good day to start making some changes.
And the next time you fall head over heels for someone in a book, ask yourself why. You might end up a better person for it!
Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. (1 John 4:11 NKJ)