L: Loving Lily. I Corinthians 13:13–“And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (NIV)
Merriam-Webster Dictionary definition of love:
- A strong affection for another
- Warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion
- The object of attachment, devotion, or admiration
- Unselfish loyalty and benevolent concern for the good of another
Phrases associated with love/loving:
- Love never fails
- Our family grows on love
- God is love; do everything in love
- Love is a friendship set to music
- Better to have lost and loved than never to have loved at all
- A friend is someone who knows all about you, but loves you anyway
L: Loving Lily’s Story:
“Lily was so excited to begin sixth grade and she couldn’t wait until music class. Ever since she learned to play a guitar in elementary school, she had wanted to learn how to play the violin. So at the beginning of middle school, she hurriedly signed up to take violin lessons from the school’s music director. She noticed that there was also one other student in her class that signed up for violin lessons on the same evening after school. Her name was Anne and both of the girls were very excited to begin taking lessons and became very good friends in school that year.
As the year progressed and after the girls learned two difficult songs, the music director told the girls that they were ready to play with the school band during the school’s spring concert which was to be held in two weeks. Although nervous, they both agreed that they would be able to participate. However, Lily noticed that Anne seemed especially anxious about the concert but thought it was just nerves. Lily decided to ask Anne about it, and Anne confided that she wasn’t sure if she could play in the concert because her mother was ill. It was during their conversation that Lily learned of Anne’s situation at home.
Anne lived with her mother and little sister and her mother always worked the day shift at the local hospital as a nurse’s aide. She was always available to pick them up after school but a neighbor would pick up Anne on the days she had her lessons. Her mother had been sick for the past several months but managed to continue working. Because of the costs for her mother’s treatments, Anne’s mother wasn’t sure how much longer she could afford to pay for her daughter’s music lessons and thought that she might have to drop out before the end of the school year.
Lily felt heartbroken for her friend and told her mother Anne’s story. What if they could help Anne so she could continue taking lessons? What if they could raise the necessary funds for both Anne and her mother’s treatments? After all, Lily had learned that “God is love” in Sunday School class and that they were supposed to do “all things in love” for one another. Lily’s mother told her to pray and then write down any ideas that she could do to help raise the necessary funds for Anne and that she would also talk with her friends at the PTA meeting that evening.
When Lily’s mom returned from her meeting, she told Lily that God had answered their prayers. When the PTA heard Anne’s story, they all agreed to take the money from the PTA benevolent fund to help pay for the rest of Anne’s lessons until the end of the school year as well as some of the costs for her mother’s treatments.
The next day after school, Lily and her mother drove to Anne’s home and presented this loving gift to her mother. With thankful hearts and tears of joy from both Anne and her mother, Lily and her mom left thanking God for allowing them to make a difference in someone else’s life.
Lily and her mother showed unselfish concern for the good of another individual and the outcome was an “outpouring of God’s love” and a blessing that Anne and her mother received by their generosity.”
John 15:12 says, “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” Showing love to another is how God shows his love toward us and that “we will remain in his love if we obey his commands.”
Romans 12:9-10 also tells us that our “love must be sincere and to hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love.”
In closing, let us think about the words from I John 4:12: “No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.” This is what we need to let others see in our lives: God’s love in us.