WEEK SEVEN, DAY FIVE, COMMON ENGLISH BIBLE COMPANION
WEEK SEVEN THEME: HOSPITALITY
DAY FIVE THEME: RADICAL HOSPITALITY
SCRIPTURE: I JOHN 3:16-24 (CEB)
“This is how we know love: Jesus laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.
But if a person has material possessions and sees a brother or sisiter in need and that person doesn’t care — how can the love of God remain in him? Little children, let’s not love with words or speech but with action and truth. This is how we will know that we belong to the truth and reassure our hearts in God’s presence. Even if our hearts condemn us, God is greater than our hearts and knows all things.
Dear friends, if our hearts don’t condemn us, we have confidence in relationship to God. We receive whatever we ask from him because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him. This is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love each other as he commanded us.
The person who keeps his commandments remains in God and God remains in him; and this is how we know that he remains in us, because of the Spirit that he has given to us.”
THE WORD OF GOD FOR THE PEOPLE OF GOD – THANKS BE TO GOD!
SOAKING IT IN: Our complete peace comes from our relationship with God our Father. As we lean into that relationship with Him and trust Him more and more with our very being and everything in our lives, then we are less and less consumed with materialism and insecurities that seek to rob us of our joy.
Our daily reliance on God the Father allows Him the joy of providing for our every need and thus experiencing joy as we understand from Whom all blessings flow. When we take charge and make things happen in our own ways and understandings, not only do we rob God of such great joy, we have so much less to show for our efforts.
God thinks and does bigger and better than we think and do. When we think that we need all manner of understanding and for all things to be as those understandings allow, we rob God of being His vessel in all things and we rob ourselves of precious relationships and greater understanding by reaching out to all as God’s equal children and enjoying life together in a way that only God could provide. In this type of Kingdom Living we never see someone who does not deserve our love and care for any reason, and we receive back in ways we would be deprivied of had we let judgment and religiosity color our living.
Our whole life rests in the understanding that Jesus Christ came and lived and died, teaching us higher roads and deeper understanding and perfect peace in the midst of every storm. Then, He rose to a deeper and richer life that is eternal. He gives us hope in every situation and circumstance and He gives us victory over all manner of petty self holiness that we are totally unable to maintain.
Christ surrounds us in every way and uses us beyond our wildest imagination as we accept and go and grow in the way that he exemplified and died for. Let His love persuade us over and over to continue it forward for all others, therefore keeping ourselves filled and overjoyed as we spill over. Thanks be to God for such great love!
Let Christ’s example lead me/us and the Holy Spirit guide me/us in Kingdom Living! May we be His people who look up and move forward rather than always looking back and looking down!