May 28, 2018

“Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ.
He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.”
– Ephesians 5:2

Great athletes know about sacrifice! To the casual observer, they make it look so easy. While making the impossible look routine, we often fail to acknowledge the sacrifices required of these athletes to reach that level of performance. As a sports fan, I have watched or read about many of the great athletes of the past century. Who doesn’t know about the “Splendid Splinter”, Ted Williams or Jackie Robinson, who broke the color barrier in Major League Baseball. If I say Joe Louis, you say World Heavyweight Boxing Champion. Heisman Trophy winner Roger Staubach had a Hall of Fame career with the Dallas Cowboys and Patty Berg is one of the greatest female golfers of all time. While each of these individuals made sacrifices to be great in their respective sport, they sacrificed for their country as well. Ted Williams and Roger Staubach served in the U.S. Navy, Jackie Robinson and Joe Louis enlisted in the U.S. Army and Patty Berg was a  Marine. NFL star Pat Tillman joined the Army Rangers in 2002 and was killed by “friendly fire” while serving in Afghanistan thus making the ultimate sacrifice for his country. Great athletes and great countries don’t just happen—great sacrifice is required!

Followers of Jesus Christ know that He sacrificed His life because of His love for us. Ephesians 5:2 reminds each of us that we have a responsibility to follow His example and live a life of love and sacrifice for others. Take a moment to pray for those who sacrifice for you on a daily basis. It may be a spouse or a trusted family member. It may be someone you don’t know by name, like the local firefighter or police officer. How about the teachers of your children or the neighbor who brings a meal during a difficult time. The Apostle Paul says we are to “live a life filled with love”, let’s get started!

Heavenly Father, thank You for Your love for Your never ending love for us. Help me to be a “pleasing aroma” to You in all I do today. Amen.   

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