Truth be told I have more questions than answers today … well that’s probably true most days … but this is Valentine’s Day and I’ve been thinking of how we truly love those around us. Especially those without a saving faith in Jesus Christ. The ones whose behavior isn’t always lovely; they’ve heard that Jesus loves them, but they can’t quite believe it could be true about them.
Yesterday in our Wednesday morning Bible Study, we wrapped up our study of 1 Thessalonians and the last four verses of Chapter 5 caught me.
Brethren, pray for us.
Greet all the brethren with a holy kiss.
I adjure you by the Lord to have this letter read to all the brethren.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
Although these passages are directed to believers about fellow believers, I think we can pull some application from these short verses in how we interact with ALL the people in our lives.
First, we pray. Pray for opportunities, pray for soft hearts and open minds, ask for gentleness and patience, for the power of the Holy Spirit to be at work, for the Word of God to be received, for hope to be restored …
Then, we extent kindness. It goes a long way to simply be nice and offer a smile. I can’t say this strongly enough .. if we are not kind, (and yes, that includes our social media posts) we’ve lost them already!
Next, we share the scriptures. The truth of God’s Word is necessary in loving others well. But, let’s be honest, the truth of scripture can sting a little, so again, please be kind. I’m in no way implying that we water down the truth, I’m simply suggesting we consider our method of delivery.
And, we give the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Extending grace to others is the least we can do when we truly understand the measure of grace given us. Let’s not take offense when non-believers don’t act like believers. Grace shouldn’t expect that.
Any thoughts on really living this out? I’m all ears – because I know that we need each other to do this well!