Be Warned. This is Random. Today people are sick at our house. The bathroom counter is covered with a wide assortment of bottles that have stuff in them to help with the coughs, fevers, and aches.
“Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” ~ Jesus (John 15:13)
I think Jesus was most likely talking about actually dying for someone else. After all, He’s the one who loved us so much that He gave up His own life. But what about laying your life down for others in less dramatic ways? There are an abundance of opportunities to do this every day!
Anyone who’s a mother knows what it’s like to get up in the night with a sick child when you don’t feel so good yourself. We do it because we have to. Do I think about laying down my life and do it with joy?
“ I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” (or, “This is your spiritual act of worship.” NIV) (Romans 12:1)
For years I had underlined in my Bible the first part of this next verse. I was learning to know God, and it was exciting! A few years back I actually realized that the end of the verse about suffering and death was just as real. How is it that I can read something over and over and then finally one day see it?
“That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;” (Philippians 3:10)
For some, these sufferings are intense, real, physical persecutions and even death. For some, they are small daily choices to be made. Will I give up myself for others or will I cling to my selfishness? I’ve got a long way to go…
This cross made of palm leaves was given to me by a beautiful woman from Pakistan who calls me her daughter. She visited the U.S. last summer and had it in her songbook and gave it to me. At Easter someone makes these little crosses and hands them to everyone who comes to church. Outside the church there are guards with machine guns to protect the Christians inside from radicals who hate them. In this country the suffering is real. You will suffer if you serve Christ.
“Greater Love”-- my dear husband has been a wonderful example of this. Ever since last May and that Fateful Tick Bite, he’s been amazing (he was before that too, don’t get me wrongJ). First of all he believed me every time when I said I don’t feel well. I mean, I looked fine. It would have been easy to think I was just being lazy or unmotivated when I was just exhausted for no apparent reason! He covered for me with the girls and helping with meals. And we joke that he even lost weight – no gourmet meals going on in this house! He gave up his own life for his family. God has blessed me. So much!
I was in the grocery store parking lot last week when two ladies came walking up to me with this rose. They asked if I knew the love of Jesus and if there was anything they could pray for me about. I’d just been to my Lyme Doctor and they prayed for my healing. I’m sure those two ladies could have found plenty of other things to be doing that afternoon. Instead, they sacrificed their time, their lives really, to reach out to random strangers. Challenging!
A side note: Last summer I had found a site with printable paper dolls from the 50’s McCall Magazine. They are absolutely adorable! (Little girl’s dolls and toys used to be so innocent.) So this morning we kept the tissues handy and worked on cutting them out for the girls to play with. It was a pleasant distraction! Go here to look at them yourself - they're free!
|The Little Sicklings.|
Like I said, this was Random. And posted later in the week than what I’d planned. Love to all of you!