for the past five days, many of us have been working together to help bonnie get her house ready to sell in the aftermath of her husband’s motorcycle injuries nearly two and a half years ago…landscaping, painting, tiling, siding repair, plumbing, packing…a huge job that people are willingly sacrificing their time and money to see happen.
we also have two families, in particular, that have been deeply impacted by the tornado in joplin. logan and aanna and adam and autumn each have many friends and family that reside in joplin who are living through the devestation…even as i write this. today, they are coordinating the collection of emergency supplies and will be leaving in the morning to drive to joplin…to deliver help and encouragement over the memorial day weekend.
these two, unrelated efforts have got me thinking.
we live in a culture that celebrates the individual. for most people, life is lived out in an individual vacuum. i take care of myself. i look after my own. i respond to my own needs first. i do what i want. i go where i choose. i function in my own best interest. i live for my own comfort…my own security…my own happiness…my own future…my own well-being.
sounds awfully…self-centered. but practically speaking, that’s how we live our lives until somebody else’s life is rocked to the point that we must look at how our lives can impact the life of another. and many…tho not all… take action.
it’s a little ironic to me that the very best way of celebrating the individual is always found in the context of community. it is when we really begin to sense that there is something greater than ourselves…and that something greater is only truly discovered when we stop isolating ourselves and disconnecting ourselves from the rest of the world.
as a follower of christ, i know that my great example emptied himself (philippians 2) for the good and well-being of others. it was there that his purpose was declared.
the same should be true of any who bear his name.