Help support the vision of Woodland Hills Community Church!

Help support the vision of Woodland Hills Community Church!
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Monday, August 10

Today’s Readings: Psalm 38; 2 Samuel 16:1-23; Mark 9:42-50; Acts 25:23-26:8; Psalm 60

There are two historical figures that I’ve looked up to for years. One of them probably wouldn’t surprise you; the other might. Those two figures are former President Jimmy Carter and Malcolm X. I admire former President Jimmy Carter for many reasons. I admire his willingness to what he thought was right even though it was unpopular at the time (i.e. turning over the Panama Canal to the Panamanians). I also admire the fact that in the years after he left office, he has devoted his life to helping others rather than simply making a fortune on the speaking circuit. I admire Malcolm X for other reasons. I admire Malcolm because he had a fierce sense of pride and self-esteem – even when society told him he wasn’t worth much. I also admire Malcolm for the tremendous capacity he had to grow as a human being. Let me give you an example of the way Malcolm grew. For years, Malcolm had asserted that white men were blond haired, blue-eyed devils. When he made his pilgrimage to Mecca later in life, however, Malcolm realized how bigoted his belief was. So you know what he did? He changed his belief. It would have been so easy for Malcolm to publically continue his previous position in order to save face. He refused to do so. He had the courage to speak his truth – no matter what. That’s what I admire most about Malcolm. Of course Malcolm isn’t the only person who had the courage to speak his truth despite the cost. In today’s passage from Acts, we hear a bit of Paul’s testimony before Agrippa. As someone who had been a Pharisee at one point in his journey, it would have been easy for Paul to continue to publically present himself as a Pharisee to save face. Or, at the very least, it would have been easy for Paul to simply back off and fade into the background following his conversion. Paul did neither of those things. He spoke his truth – no matter what the cost. Today, I invite you to consider the examples of folks like Paul and see if there is a truth in your life that you’ve been silencing to which it might be time to give voice. Til next time…

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