Monday, November 26, 2012

Deeds Of Love

Sharing hope through God's transforming grace means doing simple acts of service that prove we've been changed by Christ.

"Only where hands are not too good for deeds of love and mercy in everyday helpfulness can the mouth joyfully and convincingly proclaim the message of God's love and mercy." ~ Dietrich Bonhoeffer in Life Together (emphasis added)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Face Of A Forgiven Sinner

If there's a book that should be recommended for anyone who is part of a church body, it is Dietrich Bonhoeffer's brief and readable Life Together.  Find it at the link or your local bookstore. The passage below shows us the way to defeat interpersonal conflict and friction through prayer:

A Christian fellowship lives and exists by the intercession of its members for one another, or it collapses.  I can no longer condemn or hate a brother for whom I pray, no matter how much trouble he causes me.  His face, that hitherto may have been strange and intolerable to me, is transformed in intercession into the countenance of a brother for whom Christ died, the face of a forgiven sinner...There is no dislike, no personal tension, no estrangement that cannot be overcome by intercession as far as our side of it is concerned.  Intercessory prayer is the purifying bath into which the individual and the fellowship must enter every day.  The struggle we undergo with our brother in intercession may be a hard one, but that struggle has the promise that it will gain its goal.    ~ From Life Together, emphases added.

Monday, November 12, 2012

What A Love!

Stop for a moment and consider the amazing love of God:

"How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!" (1 John 3:1).  The word John uses, potapos, means 'of what kind'.  Here it may have the meaning, 'of what a size!' In fact potapos is from the earlier classical Greek podapos, which means, 'from what country'. Perhaps that captures John's meaning - he is talking about a love that belongs to another country, or world altogether!...It is...incredible that God should make us his children!  
~From Children of the Living God by Sinclair Ferguson 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Obsessed People Serve

"If a guy were dating my daughter but didn't want to spend the gas money to come pick her up or refused to buy her dinner because it cost too much, I would question whether he were really in love with her.  In the same way, I question whether many American churchgoers are really in love with God because they are so hesitant to do anything for Him.
People who are obsessed with Jesus do not consider service a burden.  Obsessed people take joy in loving God by loving His people (Matt. 13:44; John 15:8)."

~ From Crazy Love, by Francis Chan