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November 23 | 3 John 1-14


 

DAILY READING

 

REFLECTION


Who are you?

by Kim Starr

Our sermon series for the last few weeks has been the Family of God. We’ve honored and remembered the Saints who have gone before us; we had children who took their First Communion; we had people join God's family through baptism; and we had new members join our UALC family. If you did not personally participate in these events, you were simply an observer, and the events themselves might not have meant as much to you as they did to the participants themselves. That’s OK, but …


In his letter to his dear friend, Gaius, John gives all of us instruction on how we are to walk in the truth to give honor to God:

· Let your words and actions reflect God. John tells Gaius he’s heard from other people that Gaius was being faithful to, and walking in, the truth. People do notice what we are, or are not, doing.

· Welcome others and show them hospitality. John tells Gaius he has been faithful to not only his brothers and sisters in Christ, but also to strangers. John encourages Gaius, and us, to show hospitality to everyone so that we may all work together for Jesus. We are to send people on their way in a way that honors God.

· Do not judge or speak ill of others. John tells Gaius about another follower of Christ, Diotrephes, who has not only turned away fellow believers, but also has stopped believers who are bringing people to church. In addition, he is circulating bad comments about the church. Is this how Jesus would act? No. He would welcome everyone and encourage them to not only follow Him, but also bring others along. We are to act like Jesus, not Diotrephes.

· Do what is good. John tells Gaius that anyone who does what is good is from God. Those who do evil have not seen God. John then comments on another member of the church, Demetrius, and tells Gaius that Demetrius is spoken well of by everyone and exhibits a true testimony. We also should refrain from doing evil. "We should look to do good so that our light may shine before others so they can see our good deeds and glorify God." (Matthew 5:16)


How can we take John’s instructions to heart? After the first communion service, did you go up to any of the children and families and tell them how excited you were that they are now able to take the Lord’s Supper with us? Did you compliment them in taking another step in their faith? After the baptism and new member service, did you go up to any of these individuals and welcome them into the Lord’s family and/or the UALC family? Did you show them a warm smile and learn their names and things about them? If we were like Gaius or Demetrius, we would have. UALC is striving to be an Oasis of God’s Kingdom. We are to be and to make disciples of Jesus Christ. Let us all strive to follow John’s instructions and be and act like Gaius and Demetrius.


PRAYER

Dear Heavenly Father, we often fall short of being welcoming and encouraging to not only strangers, but also fellow members of UALC. Please help us to greet and talk to people we don’t know and to be Your light shining in the world. Amen.










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