Closing the Gap 5.21.18

Week 20: “Accept One Another”

Day 1

Pray:

Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.

Read:

Romans 15:1 We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. 2 Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. 3 For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: “The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.” 4 For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. 5 May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, 6 so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. 7 Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

Reflect:

In the secular worldview, the law of the strong defines reality.  Survival of the fittest is both a description of how humans have become what they are and a prescription of how humans are to deal with life and others.  You demonstrate your fitness by winning. The highest good is survival, so only the best survive. In the end, it doesn’t matter how you survive just that you did. Consequently, in some societies laws are in place to keep people’s survival tactics inside some acceptable boundaries.  In lawless or despot-ruled societies, however, the “strong” consume the weak without limits. In the end, what eventually becomes of the strong in all these scenarios? They ultimately become the weak. The tables are turned on them and they are no longer the fittest. Therefore, they do not survive in the end.  It is all a demonic lie. No one is “fit” and, in the end, there are no survivors. The mad rush for survival that describes the lives of many is a chasing after illusion. Stop for a moment and take a deep breath of sanity. “We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up.” Life is not about survival; it is about God’s glory.  When you live your life like he is truly alive, his glory is revealed in your life. Since he is alive, you do not have to live to protect yourself. Since he is alive, you do not have to live for what you believe will bring pleasure. Since he is alive, you do not have to “win.” Since he is alive, he is your protection, your purpose, and your pleasure. Christ has won so that you can share in his “winnings.” He won because he was the “fittest,” but in his fitness he sacrificed for all those who are not “fit” and do not deserve to survive.  In his strength, he died for the weak so that that the weak might survive. The survival of the unfit – which includes you, me and everyone else – is completely dependent upon the willing sacrifice of the only one who has ever been truly “fit”, the Lord Jesus. Become like him in his “weakness” and experience him in his strength. Look to the good of others not just your own.

Pray:

(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.

 

Leave a Reply