To Follow Jesus
My notes on Every Day with Jesus, written by Selwyn Hughes; revised and updated by Mick Brooks, published by CWR.
March/April 2016 Issue – Straight from the Heart, ‘I have you in my heart … all of you share God’s grace with me’ Philippians 1:7
The text set for today’s reading and meditation:
Philippians 1:8 (NIVUK): ”God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.”
In a way, today’s study continues the theme from yesterday discussion; when the love of Christ comes into our hearts we are given the ability and the desire to love others in the same way – the key feature of God’s love is its sacrificial nature.
Selwyn writes: “When writing to the Romans, Paul said: ‘God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us’ (Romans 5:5). When we come to love Jesus then a surprising thing happens: we begin to love everybody else who Jesus loves.
The kind of love Paul had for the Philippians was mindful, grateful and consistent. Is your love like this? … Hymn singing and worship songs have their place, but what the world needs is love – a love that is caring and consistent.”
This is a good study because it prompts us to examine how well we have expressed our love – the affection of Christ Jesus – to others within our community. Our walk with Jesus takes us outside the walls of our various church buildings and to interact with those who seek help to live their lives with a basis level of dignity but who are unable to do so for health, financial or other reasons.
In Matthew 25:36-37, we read these well known words: “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was ill and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.”
I think Jesus will be more interested in how many times you provided direct assistance to someone in need of help than the number of times you went to church and sung hymns.
What do you think about this issue?