We loved you so much that we shared with you not only God’s Good News but our own lives, too. - 1 Thessalonians 2:8 (NLT)
I love this verse because it reminds me of the internal transformation that occurs when we become followers of Christ. Our thinking, feeling, behaviors all change when we live life through the Spirit. We move from being self-serving to serving others - from our rights first to others needs first - from jealousy and anger to compassion and love for for others. (Ephesians 5:2)
Something miraculously happens within us that we no longer think only about ourselves but instead we are filled with love for other people. And, not just other Christians but for all of God's children - everyone he created - all of humanity. The more we submit our lives to Him - and pick up our cross, the more his purpose and passion grow within us. We find ourselves compelled to love others - no matter what they have done or where they have been. (Galatians 2:20)
It is from this love that we are able to boldly say to them - there is another way. Not judging them, not beating them over the head with a Bible - but simply sharing with them that God loves them, wants them to obey Him, and wants to give them salvation. Out of this love we share the Good News - the hope of Christ - a new way of living, leading, and serving - a way to a restored relationship with God (Romans 1:16-17)
We make this hope of a reconciled relationship with the LORD real, by sharing our stories. Our own personal story of God's faithfulness, love, grace, mercy, and compassion in our life. We focus on transparency not masks - on bringing things out of the shadows and into the light - we confess, we forgive, we reconcile with each other, because this is fellowship and living life together. (Colossians 3:13-17)
I am convicted today to check my heart - my response to others - my level of patience, graciousness, and love with them and to seize every opportunity to share the Good News and my own story with others.
LORD, thank you for being a God of love. A God that leads out of love and shows us how to love others. Holy Spirit, fill me with compassion and love for those that do not know you. Draw me to them. Help me not to judge them but rather to boldly share the Good News and my story with them. Jesus, give me your courage to engage people wherever they are at in life with hope, grace, and love, Amen.
Questions To Consider:
- Are you creating an environment at work that focuses both on caring for people and profits?
- What would those you love and serve say that you are motivated by?
- Who needs to hear the Good News and your personal story this week?
Make it a great day!