RELATIONSHIPS IN A HURTING WORLD! The Apostle Peter in commenting on the Christian’s general conduct in societal and personal relationships said, “Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing,” (1Peter 3:8-9 NIV). Life would be grand if everyone followed these simple “rules of the road.” All Christians should seek the mind of Christ, which will bring us as Christians into like-mindedness, so we can live and work together in harmony. This does not mean we are cookie-cutter Christians but rather that we love Jesus enough and each other enough that we serve Jesus even though we have some differences.
It is easy in our world today with so many problems and so much suffering to harden our hearts and become unsympathetic to those around us. To actually “suffer with” others in mind and heart becomes less and less common and more and more needed. With 24 hour news stations, and visual images overcoming our senses it almost drives us to shut down our sense of sympathy and compassion to survive. Questions drive us in this area of our lives. . Where do we begin? What would Jesus do? As we struggle with a lost, dying and hurting world how can we be obedient to the Word of Jesus? Let us begin with those around us and let God “drive the car” from there. “Every journey begins with a first step” and a life of sympathy, compassion and caring begins with the first act. Compassion and understanding goes a long way in helping and serving others whether friends or strangers. And pride, the disease that most of us are infected with, can be turned into humility as we serve others in the manner Peter describes. As we move into the post-election days let us as Christians lead the way in compassion, humility and healing instead of just gearing up for another election. The holiday season is upon us so let us use these days to share the message of blessings found in Jesus Christ our Savior.