24th October 2013

Breathlessly Beautiful! 

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”
Colossians 3:12 (NIV)
 

There is something amazing about people who are there for each other.  I believe that it is a quality that takes our breath away and leaves us wondering—“Am I someone who cares for others regardless of colour or creed, and do I minister to everyone in need?” You know, it is so easy to talk about things like empathy and compassion, but we need to live them. Just as our Lord did—his whole life was lived in service to others. 

What if we really believed that we were all of infinite value, bound together in, and part of, the unity of God’s love? Theologian William Countryman says, “The world will not be safe for any of us until it is safe for all. However difficult the principle of love, and however demanding and hard at times to define, love is the only moral principle that opens a door to the future. When I truly believe that I am as human as you and you are as human as I, that God loves us indistinguishably, I shall begin building a different kind of world!” 

Jesus once told a story about a man who got mugged on the road from Jerusalem to Jericho.  He was rescued by a Samaritan after being passed by a Priest and a Levite who were travelling the same road. Afterwards he asked a lawyer, “Who do you think behaved like a neighbour to this man who was robbed?” And the lawyer answered, “The one who showed mercy to him.” And Jesus commanded him, “You go and do the same!” (Luke 10:29-37). 

According to Jesus the most important commandment is to love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and your neighbour as yourself. (Mark 12:28-31). There is no higher goal than this—nothing outranks love! Everything must be held up to the light of love and measured against the principle of love. Whatever it is, if it doesn’t measure up to love, it is not the example that Jesus left us, and our goal is to follow in his footsteps. “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.” (1 Peter 2:21 NIV). If relationship is the goal, then I guess sin might also be described as anything that impedes and prevents relationship, like failing to show love to God or neighbour! If you think about it, this whole concept is something that can, I think, be called “breathlessly beautiful”, because it reflects the mind and attitude of Jesus who lived to serve everyone, even those who hated him. Let us also have this beautiful mind as we deal with those who cross our paths daily. 

Prayer
Lord, pour out upon us by your Spirit, your mind, your love, your compassion and your kindness, that we may reflect you to others.
Amen
 

Study by Cliff Neill

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cliffneill

About the Author:
Cliff Neill is an Elder in Grace Communion Church Luton.

Local  Congregation:
Grace Communion Church Luton
Farley Hill Methodist Church
North Drift Way
Farley Hill
LUTON
LU1 5JE

Meeting time:
Saturday 10:30am

Local Congregational Contact:
Harry Sullivan
Phone:  01908-582222
Email: harry_sullivan@wcg.org.uk

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