LOVE AMONG THE MEMBERS
I once was an outcast, stranger on earth, a sinner by choice, and an alien by birth, but I’ve been adopted, my name’s written down, an heir to a mansion, a robe, and a crown. I’m a child of the King, a child of the King; with Jesus, my Savior, I’m a child of the King.
-Harriet E. Buell
Read Philippians 1:8.
I have been adopted twice. The first time happened when I was four days old, too young to know how the Lord Himself had crafted the perfect family for me. He chose godly parents who told me often how much they loved me and that I was chosen to be their child. My second adoption happened at age nine. Under the heavy conviction of the Holy Spirit, I asked Jesus Christ to forgive my sins and to become the Lord of my life. Ephesians 1:15, Romans 8:23, and Romans 9:4 teach that at that very moment, I was adopted into the family of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The family of faith became my own.
Have you ever been adopted? To know that you have been purposely included and clearly made a part of a family is to experience a strong bond of love. Can you feel the heart of Paul as he says, “God knows how badly I long to be with you because of my affectionate love for you?”
If the members of our church were just like you in their attitudes and actions, would our congregation be more or less loving? If your answer is the latter, may I suggest that you check your adoption papers and make sure you are in the right family? When I realized that the Creator, the God of the Universe, chose me, even when I was unlovable, it was natural for me to show the same love and grace toward my brothers and sisters in Christ. In fact, it is a sin when I do not!
Is there a brother or sister in Christ whom you need to ask for forgiveness or need to forgive? Will you forgive them today? Will you commit to being even more loving to the believers? Pray that God will help you walk through the steps of forgiveness and to have a genuine outpouring of love toward those who may have hurt you.