LESSONS FROM ROMANS FIFTEEN
Have we made it all so complicated and missed the simple truth? Are we pointing to Him as we journey here? Do others see Jesus in us… His Church, His Body, His Temple, His Children?
Are you ‘strong’? Spiritually strong? – Bear the infirmities, the burdens, the load of the weak. Do you see their need? Can you meet it? Can you help them to meet that need? Please your neighbor for his/her good, build them up. Christ pleased NOT Himself, so ought we to live by His example.
Are we reading and studying His Word? His Book? The Bible? Romans 15:4 says, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have HOPE!” If only we would LOVE His Word! Do we know it enough to put it into practice and daily offer Hope? We do not hold Hope unto ourselves, Hope is meant to be shared, given out everywhere, to shine out of us like a beacon on a stormy shore.
Question to self: What am I doing here?
Now the GOD of patience, the God of consolation grant you… He gives and equips us mightily. All patience is His. All consolation, comfort is His. He offers this daily to His own. But why? Does He offer it just so we can ‘feel good’? Although He cares about our heart, our emotions, this is not His purpose. He grants us, gives unto us individually, to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus. He gives this patience and this comfort unto us that we may give it unto others in need. Paying it forward in its truest sense. More than money, giving one of the hardest things to give… a part of self! Investing in the lives of others with ‘you’! Giving of yourself to encourage someone else. Oh, sometimes that is the part we dread so much. Why? Because we are flawed, broken people. We are not perfect and when we open our mouths, we open up our vulnerability. We lose all sense of hiding what is not perfect and peaceful. Friend, can I encourage you to reach out, touch lives, no matter the cost? Can I remind you that we all are in need of GRACE and MERCY every single day? We have not arrived! We will not be like Him until we reach our home beyond this earth. We are His workmanship every day that we live. We fight flesh and desires day by day, moment by moment. His Word helps us to do that, calls us to do that. Truth, verse upon verse, points to Him and teaches us to walk out each step learning more about Him, about Grace and about Mercy. We are a continual work in progress. Our flaws and our failures reveal our humanity to others that are struggling, giving Hope! We have worn our ‘halo’ too long, pull it off and let others know that life is hard…but JESUS! Life has struggles… but JESUS! We stumble, we fall, we cry and we bleed… but JESUS! He is E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G!!! He is ENOUGH, the answer to all that we stand in need of and then some!
Question to self: Do I believe Jesus?
That ye may with one mind (unity, same thoughts, His thoughts) and one mouth (unison, togetherness in harmony) … get this, LOVE IT, Glorify God! Oh Dear Friend, that is what will come. PRAISE! WORSHIP! We will come forth in all that we are to bring Him Praise. Our soul will pour out Worship unto the ONLY ONE worthy of receiving it. Can you imagine? Oh, how we NEED Him! We need to Praise and Worship Him for all that He is. In all of our brokenness, our mess, our failure and our inability to offer Him anything, He CHOSE to LOVE us, DIE FOR us, REDEEM us. HE LOVED YOU! HE LOVED ME! He didn’t stop there, He LOVES right now and always will, even in the messes we continue to make.
Question to self: Can I even worship Him?
Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us! That word ‘receive’ is the pay it forward word of our life… yes, for a lifetime! Here it is: to take to one’s self; to take as one’s companion; to take by the hand in order to lead aside; to take or receive into one’s home, with the collateral idea of kindness; grant one access to one’s heart, into friendship. Wow! I would say that He wants us to invest deeply, to purpose to be a friend indeed.
Question to self: Will I invest? Even when it hurts? Even when it’s hard?
Christ has called us to love, to shine, and to be real! We are to remove our cape, we are not a super hero. We are to shatter our halo, we are not perfect, never will be. We are to burn our cloak, offer our façade unto His destruction. We can relinquish any crown that we have made and begin laying up the real ones in Heaven. What joy that we may lay them at His feet! I ‘desire’ to invest. I ‘desire’ to point to Him. I ‘desire’ to be ‘multiplying’, not ‘dividing’!
Need for change? Time for self-examination? What are you investing in? I pray it is a “WHOM” not ‘what’. As the body of Christ, are you ‘multiplying’ or ‘dividing’? Dig deep, ask the hard questions and answer them honestly. Be the change that you want to see in someone else! Investing in others is an investment that always pays off. Although our reward and inheritance is in Heaven, investing here brings a Peace beyond measure or definition. Satisfying our Father multiplies beyond anything we can ever imagine. Examine life through the eyes of Jesus. Look for opportunity to change a life. Experience the truth that His Word is teaching. Invest wholeheartedly, someone is depending on the Light that you are to be shining!
I want to drink deep! Father, pour in that I may be poured out!