Show family affection to one another with brotherly love. Outdo one another in showing honor. (HCSB)
Not simply corporate life, community life or even deep friendship. God’s word calls us to a deep sense of family life together based in love. We all need each other and are called to work together as the ‘body of Christ’ (Eph. 5:30, 1Cor. 12). But there is more needed than just getting along for the sake of the work. God desires for us to make sacrifices to ‘walk together as a family’, that’s what ‘showing honor’ to each other is all about. Jesus sacrificed to bring us away from worship at the temple and into a deeper relationship with God and each other.
Jesus answered, “Destroy this sanctuary, and I will raise it up in three days.” (HCSB)
Who do you love?
Who are you willing to walk with?
Over the years I’ve had times where there were folks I didn’t want to slow down and walk with, or others that went too fast. People I thought were ‘too good’ or ‘too bad’ for me. The rich, the poor, the old, the young, the angry, the worthless and the annoying. But, God doesn’t put those labels on any of us. He likes for His children to love and honor everyone around them.
Joseph, Daniel, David and others in scripture often have this said about them, ‘they found favor among the people’. Jesus also has this said of His young life.
And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and with people. (HCSB)
Jesus loved His earthly family and His Father in heaven. He walked with twelve men and even prayed for them before His death on the cross. It is amazing how Jesus honored His flawed, struggling and growing disciples in this amazing prayer.
I am in them and You are in Me.
May they be made completely one,
so the world may know You have sent Me
and have loved them as You have loved Me. (HCSB)
These were not perfect men. The disciples had failed Jesus many times. But yet He affirms His love for them and encourages their love for each other. He values them and believes they will have a future ministry impact not because of intelligence or a proven track record of walking perfectly, but because Jesus honors them and wants them to show God’s power to this world through loving each other.
As we walk with Jesus we learn to value other people. Jesus valued single women, children, the lame, the blind, the elderly, the Jew and the Gentile, the Roman guard and the disciples themselves. Who while young Jewish men, had not been picked for religious duties by their local rabbi’s. Jesus loved everyone who would let Him, even a Pharisee named Nicodemus. Jesus stayed up late trying to explain how God’s kingdom worked to this ‘righteous man’.
So what about us. Do we only walk alongside people we like on our Journey? Or do we value everyone God sends our way. Do we sit down and get to know new people as Jesus did? Do we stand by old friends who let us down sometimes like Jesus did? Do we move through life cutting people off or bringing people together?
I took a long walk once and found I enjoyed only certain terrains. The soft sand was nice, but I didn’t want to walk in the gravel. The mud was cumbersome, but then I enjoyed the sidewalk. The railroad tracks were boring and there were nettles in the field. But I was walking with friends and I wanted to be with them, so I dealt with the shifting terrains. They were secondary to the companionship I cherished.
Where is Jesus sending us? What new friends can we walk with and love for His glory along life’s Journey? What comfort may we have to leave behind to value people as Jesus did. Our favorite places and terrains may be okay to give up if we get on a good long walk with our Savior Jesus. After all He loves us, so we can love others.
Let’s go for a walk and find new friends.
Life’s a Journey.