Farmers Market is, as the name implies, a farmer’s market where you can purchase fresh produce, baked goods and an assortment of other tasty treats. It has been open to the public since the 1930’s. I’ve been coming here on an occasional basis since I arrived in Los Angeles in 1966.
I had been out painting en plein air and seeking the lost one morning and my trip home took me by Farmers Market, so I decided to stop and have a snack and cup of coffee. While I was relaxing under the green umbrellas, a scantily clad lady (rather attractive) came to my table and started a conversation. It was not just any conversation. It wouldn’t take a genius to see figure out what she was up to, but I thought I should remove any uncertainty (and that was all I was going to remove:); “What do you do?” I asked. “I date people,” she whispered in her seductress way. Just as I suspected, she was a prostitute. “You need to date Jesus,” I replied. She immediately left me alone.
I had not intended to paint here, but how could I not do a watercolor to mark this encounter.
This past Sunday, my pastor spoke on setting boundaries in our lives. Had I not had pre-existing boundaries set up for what I would or would not allow myself to do, I might have gone on a date. But I’m a married man with a wonderful family. If I were to ‘date’ another woman, I would damage, if not destroy the relationship I have with my wife, children, family and friends. I won’t even talk about the potential financial loss; that could be the least of my problems. Worst of all, I would hurt the relationship I have with Jesus. Could God then trust me to represent Him with integrity in a world in desperate need of Him?
Does a farmer wait until after the cows are roaming the pasture before he puts up a fence? I imagine not. I think we would all be wise to erect boundaries that will keep the wolves away from ourselves, our flocks and our crops.
What boundaries have you erected?