With Love, Laura Beth

Words from my heart

Well-Ordered Heart

California summer evenings … I love ‘em. Warm, gentle breezes are my favorite, just like smiling is Buddy’s favorite (Elf is one of the best movies ever!). But school has started and the first day of fall will be blowing in soon. For some of us, that sparks a teeeeenie-weenie bit of dread about the holidays. It means our to-do lists grow longer while days become shorter.

So, the first thing I used to think—along with the need to get organized—was to maintain a balanced life in the midst of all the busyness. I bought into that idea without even knowing about Zig Ziglar, the “balance = success” guru. I’m not sure how, but somehow the message to pursue balanced living had seeped into my veins.

And then I read The Life You’ve Always Wanted by John Ortberg. He introduced me to something new—the quest for a well-ordered heart.

Jesus never said, “… lead a balanced life.” But there is a pursuit that is worthy of our devotion. It is the quest for what might be called a well-ordered heart. Augustine suggested that to have a well-ordered heart is to love

  • the right thing
  • to the right degree
  • in the right way
  • with the right kind of love

Augustine wrote further, “It seems to me that a brief but true definition of virtue is this: ‘It is well-ordered love.’”

Well-ordered heart, well-ordered love. Those words drew me in, wrapping me with the warmth of a wool blanket on a cold winter’s night. Embraced by a new understanding, I began my quest.

I now offer these words to you, words to ponder. Maybe you’ll ponder them while sitting on your front porch. Maybe while sipping coffee or tea from your favorite mug. Or maybe while a gentle breeze is blowing through your hair on a summer evening in California. And who knows?

Maybe you’ll find yourself smiling, too.

Lovingly,

Laura Beth

Taken from The Life You’ve Always Wanted by John Ortberg. Copyright © 1997, 2002 by John Ortberg. Used by permission of Zondervan. www.zondervan.com

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This entry was posted on August 28, 2013 by .
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