We’re entering the home stretch of our journey of discovering emotionally healthy spirituality. This week we learned from Jesus as he talked with a lawyer about who should be considered a “neighbour” as we love God and our neighbours. (Luke 10.25-37)
To be able to have an extended definition of “neighbour” is a sign of “Growing into an Emotionally Mature Adult” (the sixth pathway).
Here are a couple more modern day examples to inspire you: one from Brian and one from Sarah.
And here’s something to work through as a family.
On Sunday, one of our missionaries, Caleb Brownhill, shared a message from Romans 12 and Genesis 3 about being transformed from the patterns of this world to the ways of God. You can listen to that message on our current sermons media player.
We’ve provided some further reading on three of the main ideas Caleb helped us understand as we seek to grow in Christian maturity.
First, the shift from the selfish life to the God-centred life requires a hard look within. Read more in “The Antidote for Selfishness is You.”
Second, recognize when you’re shifting the blame. We’ve linked to this article before, but it’s that good: “Blame-Shifting Away our Sin.”
Third, journey towards maturity. What does maturity look like? When it comes to how we see and treat ourselves, St. Bernard has some thoughts: “When Love Grows Up”. And just in case you think that spiritual maturity is all about seriousness, be encouraged by “God and Laughter.”
The New Testament provides us with lots of ways to be with “one another.” It’s important we keep encountering them since we’ve got far to go until we’re actually obeying God’s will found in them.
This week, 1 John 2 showed us how God has gathered us into a community of individuals that shine God’s light and love in unique ways that encourage others. After the message, a member shared the above song!
Being in community allows God to shine a light on our darkness through others. Think about that a little more with Tim: “Sanctification is a Community Project.”
And being in community encourages us to continue to walk in God’s light. Be encouraged by Meagan’s reflections in, “We’re All in this Together.”
We’re continuing to learn from 1 John as a community at CCC. If you want to listen along, visit our church’s media player for the current sermon series as well as past messages. This week’s text was 1 John 1.5-2.11.
The first resource we’d like to draw your attention to is a recent book by Philip Yancey, Vanishing Grace: Whatever Happened to the Good News? In it, Yancey covers a lot of ground, including the various ways we can shine the truth of God as Christians.
Here are two posts that will give you a taste of the book as well as encourage you to think about how the way Christians love each other makes a difference for their witness to an unbelieving world.
First, what if we actually obeyed all of the ‘one anothers’ in the New Testament?
Second, what if we were seen as the early church was- in contrast to the rest of the world in how we treated and supported each other?
Finally, here’s a short prompt for reflecting on how the Christian community is defined in this day and age. Is this the way we really want it to be?
We’ve begun a journey with 1 John at Christ Community Church and invite you to join us.
Here on the blog we’ll be sharing some added resources, thought provokers and challenges to action.
We begin with highlighting a series on The High Calling on 1 John; first up one that applies directly to last Sunday’s text, 1 John 1.1-4: “What Is It Like to Feel God’s Touch?”
On Sunday we also talked about the peculiar nature of the church community. Though we are to be open and welcoming, there is something distinct and special about the fellowship of the church. If we can’t love the people we are united in Christ with, how can we even imagine loving those who don’t know Christ? But what if you’re trying to figure out how to “love THOSE weirdos,” as Josh not so delicately puts it?
Can you really talk about love enough? God is love, after all. As Christians, we are distinctly called to love.
To love our enemies….
To build community through love…
To remember the love is above anything else we might do…