Community in Action October 12, 2020

Yesterday I mentioned the importance of being involved in a partnership. I talked about how Paul’s letter to the Philippians was filled with words of joy and allusions to the importance of a sense of community. But most importantly Paul looked on the Philippians as fellow sojourners, people with whom he had a partnership. This partnership was to spread the good news that faith in Jesus can help you become the person God created you to be.

    I challenged the congregation to identify or seek someone, or a few more, with whom they could be in partnership. I believe God made us to live best in community, but to be people who share the good news we need to be in a partnership.

    So what is a partnership? I think a partnership is a person or persons who are encouragers who help you grow in your faith and in your witness as a follower of Jesus. Notice I say encourage, that does not mean people who tell you want to do or critique “how well” you live out your life as a Christian.

    I don’t know about you, but I have plenty of people who want to tell me how I can live my life better as a Christian or how I failed to live up to “their” expectations as a Christian. A partnership includes people who walk with you when the going gets rough, as Paul mentioned in verse 14, chapter 4 of his letter to the Philippians. These Philippians were people who shared his distress or trouble or difficulties. They helped shoulder the burden of life’s woes with him.

    Do you know people who are encouragers for you? Do you know people who trust you?  Do you know people who long the best for you? Listen to their words and embrace their encouragement.

    God longs for us to be witnesses in this world of his mercy, grace, and love. God knows we will make mistakes. God knows that we at times we will be fragile. God knows at times we will be courageous. God knows that at times we will be the witnesses he calls us to be, so God gives us a community to help us be lifted up and a community that needs to lifted up by us.

    Find someone who wants the best for you and is willing to be more concerned about your interests than their own, Philippians 2:4. This is a person who can be a partner with you as you walk the road of life.

    Just as they will be your encourager you need to be theirs. So look for what is good in people around you and practice thinking of ways to encourage them. You may not find a partner right away or you may have someone who is already a partner with you, but know this God longs for everyone to know about his love and mercy and grace so let’s seek to find the best way we can be a witness to those who haven’t heard the good news.

    Seeking to serve our Lord by witnessing His love to others,

    Pastor Randy

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