God’s Word for Times Like These is a series of 10 inspirational Bible reading notes produced by Scripture Union International as the world faces Covid-19. This is Part 7. In Part 6 we were reminded to trust in God and not be anxious.
Part 7: Be kindly affectionate and Show Brotherly Love
Love in Action – Behave Like a Christian
9 (A)Let love be without hypocrisy. (B)Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10 (C)Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, (D)in honor giving preference to one another; 11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 (E)rejoicing in hope, (F)patient[a] in tribulation, (G)continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13 (H)distributing to the needs of the saints, (I)given[b] to hospitality.
In these days there is a lot of online activity – people are having to use the internet to stay connected and continue important work and online schooling. But amidst the good of online connections is the online abuse we see especially amongst Samoans engaging in the Samoan language – towards one another. Today’s verse reminds is to be kind to one another and behave like the Christians we say we are.
We are also asked to distribute what we have to those in need. While we need to do all we can to look after our own health, our eyes are not to shift from the needs of our brothers and sisters around us while we are all persevering, contributing, and serving – we are also to keep on rejoicing, praying and practising hospitality.
This is the absolute and overriding requirement of love.
This is what it means to honour one another.
This is a generosity that comes from the Spirit, motivated by a deep concern for others and sustained by hope.
Love is more about what we do than about how we feel.
Read through the verses again and note the simple practical focus. Now, “Go and do likewise” – Go and be like Jesus.
For you and the children: On a sheet of paper, list the names of neighbors, family members, friends, grandparents, aunties and uncles, cousins, school friends, church families, work colleagues, staff that work for you. Talk about who might have the greatest needs.
What is one thing each member of your family could do for one or more of your ‘neighbours’ that reflects kindness and generosity?
Make a list of how you can show brotherly love to those around you at this time of uncertainty.
Lord, help us to see the needs of those around us; may my needs and my selfishness not prevent me from seeing and serving those around me. Let us shpw kindness and generosity is what we say and do. Amen