Adore or More?

Funny Groucho with Hearts

Family has always meant the world to me.  My own family was rather tiny. I have one sis——my Irish twin. We’re less than a year apart.

We couldn’t be more opposite.

  • She was good at math. I was good at literature.
  • She could use a chainsaw. I could use an emery board.
  • She became the Electrical Engineer. I became the Speech Therapist.

Yeah. We’re different. But I adore her. And I’m certain she’s rather fond of me.

You see, we’re family.

Eventually I grew up and had my own family. I’m filled with equal adoration for them——idiosyncrasies and all.

I’m enamored of the way my hunny looks when he’s completely submerged in a task. He doesn’t know I see it, but he does this quirky thing with his upper lip. He’ll tighten it at the exact moment he’s uber focused.

His upper lip is probably overlooked by others but not me. I adore it…because he’s family.

I love the way my eldest sons eyes turn into melted pools of brown chocolate when he feels something deeply…which is often because his 6’4” frame houses the heart of a gentle giant.

I notice his eyes when others may see past them and I adore them…because he’s family.

My daughter chews like a bunny. Front teeth only. Poor kid. She had no other teeth for so long I swear she never learned to chew with anything but the four in the fore.

Her chewing could gnaw at other onlookers but I think she is adorable…because she’s family.

The youngest snaps his fingers and slaps his thighs—often. He hears rhythms in his head that ooze out of his digits even if a guitar or drumstick aren’t close by. Hearing these sounds is music to my heart because I know he’s close by.

His syncopated snapping might annoy someone else but I think it’s adorable…because he’s family.

And don’t even get me started on my “words can’t express the awesomeness” of the family I married into. They are love and devotion in fleshly form. I still pinch myself in wonder and gratitude over being grafted into such an incredible tribe.

Isn’t this all good? Amazing! Fantabulous!

And yet…

There’s another phenomena that tries to attach itself to my adoration of loved ones. It’s disconcerting to think that something so full of marvel and delight can serve as fodder for something as dangerous and foul as idolatry.

Idolizing my loved ones is something I have to be wary of.

It’s interesting to note that synonyms for the word adore are:




And yes—idolize.

Big. Fat. Ouch.

Girlfriends, I’m going be transparent. I’ve had to learn hard lessons about discerning the yearn to love others out of my own needs versus loving others out of fullness in Christ.

There is a difference.

Jennifer Dukes Lee addresses this in her book Love Idol. As she says, It’s darn easy to let others “take up space in our hearts that belongs to God alone.”

When we cherish the ones God gave us that can be God honoring. It’s just that sometimes the compass can stealthily shift from “cherish” to “worship”.

Do you ever struggle with loving “too much”?

Take heart. God would never entrust us with a family to love without giving us the tools to love Him more! Of course the most important “tool” is a willing heart. He knows our thoughts and He will draw near to us the moment we ask Him to do so. He prompts me in private, early morning conversations that:

” The heart is the most deceitful thing there is…” Jer. 17:9 AMP

Good gravy! No wonder I struggle! But oh, how grateful I am that He doesn’t stop there. He then reminds me of Davids prayer:

“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10

The vulnerability David modeled when he had coffee with God encourages me to do the same.

God leads me to pray (and perhaps you as well)——–

“Father, thank you from the bottom of my heart for family that I adore. Thank you that I can love them as a reflection of the love I have for you (as well as the love you have for me). If my compass shifts from cherish to worship please keep me accountable. For I know this, when I love you most, it is only then I will be able to love them at all.”

I’m pretty sure I’m going to keep on adoring, cherishing, and valuing my family but I also know that with God’s help my love for them will be kept in the proper perspective…for their sake as well as mine!

He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.” Matthew 10:37-39

{If the topic of family is near and dear to your heart stop by Suzanne Eller’s site today. You’ll meet many more women with inspiring thoughts on family and living free!}

Your DoAhead Friend,


  1. We tend to overdo our love to our family yes. But I agree with you that it’s healthier to put a boundary to it. To be selfless but to also be aware of not going beyond. It’s better that way. Even God was so loving yet He corrects us.

    Have a fantastic weekend!

  2. Such a real challenge that we so often overlook. I think I sometimes think – well there’s nothing wrong with how much I love my husband because love it a good thing. I love what you said: “God would never entrust us with a family to love without giving us the tools to love Him more!” I choose to love God more … with His help 🙂

  3. Cindy you were not my neighbor today at Suzie’s but I wanted to stop for a hi anyway. I definitely understand putting love ones in the wrong spot – above God in many ways. God has taught me some valuable lessons especially with my husband on putting my fella in the place God should be in. Glad I stopped by friend!

    • Oh no! Let’s get on our Mr. Roger’s cardigans and move next to one another! I’m so glad you stopped by too! Hope you are having a wonderful weekend Carmen!

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