Christians need one another, and I see this in my life very often. I want to say how thankful I am for my brothers and sisters in Christ.
We are a body in Christ, right? One of us might have a strength in one area and another might be strong in another, and when we come together we all benefit and are made into the image of Christ.
I tell you what, I need my brethren.
There are a few of you (you might know who you are) who continually challenge me and cause me to reflect on my areas of weakness, whether you perceive it always or not, and I love that. I need that, and I think we all do.
In my last post about what makes a “real” believer, I was thinking about factual understanding verses loving our brethren. In my last article about the resurrection, I challenged some common beliefs, and then later I came to realize some error in how I presented this argument (I will put out an amended version).
There are surely Christians out there who believe all the traditional ideas that I write against. They believe that grace means their sin is no big deal, they believe that the gospel is forgiveness but they have not been taught about the transformation also promised, they believe in traditional ideas of heaven and hell — but they love Jesus and they love people.
It can be love to say the hard things, but not when we feel gratified in ourselves. I try to keep focused on that. I try to say things out of love, but the Lord knows I need to grow in that. There are ways in which I can be compassionate, gentle, and the Lord knows he has given me a great capacity for mercy and forgiveness, but there is a fleshly side of me that has not been crucified fully — and this side of me can be a a jerk. This side of me can get hung up on ideas and become so zealously affected in them that I am too rough with my brethren. That’s not good.
I think this is why we are not supposed to be so quick to point to the faults of others, but instead use the strengths the Lord has given us to build up the body of Christ. We all have faults, and we all have gifts, and they are meant to work together.
I think Christians should receive the things I write, but I keep working on how I write them. It’s typical for me to write something then a few months down the line read it and wish I had said something differently, or maybe I notice something of my own mind that I injected that is not fully true.
That’s why I most hope to encourage a relationship with Jesus, because when we seek him and not this world, he will teach us and we will grow in all good things. Even so, I believe a lot of this process is done through our brethren, so we should be less quick to point the finger at their faults and learn from their strengths, while also allowing others to help us overcome.
One person’s strength is anther’s weakness, and when we work together instead of destroying each other, the body of Christ will be mighty indeed!
I have to be constantly reminded to lean not on my own understanding. I would be bankrupt if I didn’t have my brethren to challenge me to get outside of myself–as much as I listen to God and have the desire to do what is right, I fall short. And, aside from holding me accountable, it just simply is nothing short of a gift to do life and follow Christ with other people.
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