Help support the vision of Woodland Hills Community Church!

Help support the vision of Woodland Hills Community Church!
For those of you who would like to support the vision & ministry of Woodland Hills Community Church (the faith community I serve that continues to encourage me to minister outside the box), please click on the link just above.

Saturday, July 18

Today’s Readings: Psalm 63; 2 Samuel 2:18-32; Mark 5:1-13; Ephesians 5:1-14; Psalm 64

The words from Ephesians 5:2 immediately brought to mind an experience I had with my mother growing up. My mother was very artistic and had a lifelong dream of taking painting lessons so she could learn how to paint. She got married relatively early in life, however, so she had to put those lessons on hold for many years. Finally, when the last of my three older siblings finished high school she figured she would have a small window of opportunity to take those painting lessons before I reached junior high and high school and my needs started to increase. I was in the fourth grade at the time. So my mother quickly signed up for painting lessons with an artist in our small town. Shortly after she started painting lessons, however, I began to whine about taking piano lessons. “You let Karen (my older sister) take piano lessons when SHE was in school,” I observed. “Why can’t I take piano lessons NOW!” My mother could have created an excuse about why it wasn’t a good time for me to start piano lessons, or she could have said something like, “Because now it’s time for ME to pursue my dream.” She did neither of those things. Instead, she quit her painting lessons so my family could afford to send me to piano lessons. Talk about living into the words from Ephesians 5:2 – “[Christ] didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that.” Every time I think about what it means to love another from the depths of ones being, I think of that loving sacrifice my mother made. Perhaps you have had an experience like that in your life where a loved one gave something very profound that for you has come to define the act of giving in a Christ-like manner. If so, today I would encourage you to honor that person’s gift by finding ways you could love like Christ for another person in your life. Til next time…

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