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Monday, May 23, 2016
Today’s Reading | John 15:12–17
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father. You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another.” (NRSV)
Edmund Kimbell was a remarkable musician who loved Fourth Church, particularly singing in the Morning Choir. When he was a child, he had received a kidney transplant, but while only in his thirties, that kidney began to fail. As it did, the Morning Choir became Edmund’s care team. Every day someone from the choir went to his home to change dialysis bags, prepare food, and clean his apartment. Because his calling was to be a musician and the choir meant so much to him, he continued singing, even when other choir members had to carry him up the steps into the choir loft. This lasted about a year until Edmund passed away, but the choir would have been glad to have done it even to this day. Edmund loved Fourth Church, the choir, and the music we made together, and the choir loved him for the person that he was.
Jesus said, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Fourth Church is such an incredible, loving community, and there are many stories like the Morning Choir and Edmund in which individuals or care teams share God’s love with people in need. I am so thankful to be a part of a community that is putting love into action every day through tutoring, food and clothing distribution, counseling, care giving, and so many other ways. Every one of us is a child of God, created in God’s image, and we are called to share God’s love with each other at all times and in all places. Where can you put God’s love into action today, tomorrow, and for the rest of your life?
O, Jesus Christ, you loved us so much that you gave your life on the cross. Help us to be your hands and feet in this world, so that helping others we put your love into action. Amen.
Written by John W. W. Sherer, Organist and Director of Music
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