Love Is the Answer

But if you are always biting and devouring one another, watch out! Beware of destroying one another. 16So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves.”

Galatians 5:15-16 NLT

Today’s culture promotes self over the community. Think about it. Taking pictures used to be about capturing precious moments of friends, family members, and loved ones. Now, it is all about selfies! I do not need you to take a picture of me – I can do that all by myself! Social media has driven us to lead with the ever-present motive of “what’s in it for me” or “what will it cost me.”

Social interaction, face-to-face conversation, getting to know each other beyond a cursory acknowledgment has waned over the years. The community has its advantages. A three-cord strand is not easily broken. The Holy Trinity is the epitome of what community means. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit – three distinct persons with distinct responsibilities that complement and work together!

Our predisposition to sin will lead us to hate, separate, highlight differences, and even question the truth. God sent the Holy Spirit to guide us into all truth.

The greatest commandment is to “love God with all your heart, soul, and mind. The second is equally important: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” How can we love each other if we know very little about each other? How can the Body of Christ act in concert as does the Holy Trinity, when we barely know each other by name?

Jesus told his disciples (by the way, that’s you, too) in John 13:34 NLT, “As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” Serving others is a definite form of love. Love gives. We are, in effect, giving ourselves away! Love is selfless. It does not always get its way. Love does not destroy. Love is the answer to all the ills of the world!

Joseph’s leadership role came because he kept his heart right, and God graced him with the ability to interpret dreams. His gifted ability caused him to be released from prison to interpret Pharaoh’s dream, and ultimately Joseph saves the people from starving.

God is in the details. Joseph’s life in many ways played out precisely the way God intended for it, hardships and all. Joseph reconciled with his brothers and brought their families to live in Egypt during the famine. This all happened because Joseph submitted himself to God’s plan and embraced the new life, culture, and community to which God called him.

Reflect

  1. Be Service-Oriented: Look to serve others. Work at being more hospitable. Emulate the people in Acts, offer food, clothing, material goods, or items that can bless the lives of others.
  2. Be Team Minded: Join a Dream Team or a Connect Group. They are communities that come together to worship, share, serve, exchange, etc.
  3. Be an Encourager: It is an eye-opener to see others dealing with the same issues you have. We gain encouragement, support, and accountability within a community.

Prayer

Father, I am in this world, but not of this world. I am Your disciple on earth. I pledge to walk in love and truth. I promise to honor others with service and encouragement. I want to be a light in the darkness. I want to reflect You. Help me to be more like Jesus in every area of my life. Amen

Upcoming Connect 21 Events

  1. Saturday Morning Prayer (Jan 29th @ 9 am at The Way UMC – Latimer Hall) More Details
  2. Sunday Morning Service (Jan 30rd @ 10 am at River Ridge High School)