Some people say I have Attention Deficit Disorder. I think it is more information overload. My brain is continually filled to overflowing, swirling and churning with thoughts and ideas. So much so that my employees tell me there are times when I walk away in the middle of a conversation. They say something, I give a reply, and then I walk away when they start to respond. Like a dog who sees a squirrel something grabs my attention and off I go. I am oblivious.
This behavior is rather embarrassing and can lead to harm in relationships. It would be easy for my staff to get hurt feelings, call me a jerk and then complain to others about what an insensitive boss they had. They could use their knowledge of this behavioral flaw to embarrass me. They could, but my current employees don’t.
They do the opposite. Because they know my heart and my desire to do the right thing they not only overlook this fault, they actually take steps to counteract any harm. They cover me and protect me, they have my back. When we have new employees or students in the office they warn them, “Dr. Barrett can be a little ADD at times. It is hysterical, but sometimes he will turn and walk away in the middle of a conversation. Don’t be offended, it’s just him!”
This is what people do when they care about someone. They cover over the flaws of others and protect their weaknesses.
Paul addressed this, saying “Love always protects.” One way to interpret his words is to say that like a roof, love always covers.
This is a characteristic of healthy relationships and particularly of healthy marriages. We look out for one another and step up to defend and protect one another. We do not take advantage of our knowledge of weaknesses to make ourselves look good, instead we intentionally act to keep others safe.
While this is important to do in marriage, it is important in all of our relationships, in our families, our work relationships, our church relationships and friendships. It is not easy, it can be risky, but it is what love does. This raises the question- Are you a protector?
This post is the 10th in a series on love, taken from the Bible passage 1 Corinthians 13. Since all of us need to be more loving, consider sharing these blog posts with your friends.