Feature on Garden Family: Luke & Emilie Hill
Meet the Hill Family
Luke and Emilie Hill have been members of the Garden church body for about four months now. They are married three years and have a one year old son. Originally from Orange County and after bouncing between various cities in the US (Seattle, Austin TX and Irvine), they've now decided to reside in Long Beach, living only a few minute drive away from Garden's Sunday gatherings.
Through this season of being at the Garden, God has been teaching them fully what walking with the Lord means and how to begin implementing that in their lives. The Lord also has been giving them a better encompassing understanding of the Holy Spirit. And they've found themselves being challenged to get out of their more comfortable way of living in order to walk more and more in accordance with God's will. Specifically, the Lord has been teaching Emilie and Luke how to be casually open and generous with money.
One thing that began to change in their lifestyle to model their lives like the way of Jesus over these past few months was beginning to practice tithing. A few months ago, they felt strongly convicted that the Lord wanted them to start tithing, so they began to do so. Within two weeks, the Lord took away the financial issues they were facing. A week later, God blessed Luke with a raise. And the Lord blessed them with new ideas about how to budget to save money and come up with a longer term financial plan. They were encouraged and astonished by how obeying their God-given conviction, though it meant taking a financial risk, resulted in God blessing them.
Another way that God has been moving in Luke's life, specifically, has been at his work. Luke does woodwork with a small group of guys in downtown LA. He is the only Christian in the office. Since he began attending the Garden, he would listen to the Garden's past podcasts as he would work throughout the day. The sermons he listened to really motivated him to share his faith and how God has been moving in his life with the guys he works with.
The outcome of sharing his faith was a lot different than he expected. His boss, who hates religion, actually thought the way Luke was living was really awesome and realized Luke was a genuine Christian who strives to live by what the Bible says. Luke says that his boss began to have an increased interest in Christianity since those initial conversations.
In this upcoming season, Luke is excited to go on the Men's Retreat and get to know more of the guys at the Garden. Emilie and Luke have recently joined the Belmont Park community group. They are both excited to get more integrated into the Garden church community and, hopefully, find more Jesus-centered relationships in their lives. They also are excited to continue to grow through the Garden's teaching and be transformed more into the likeness of Jesus.