Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Jesus First, Others Second

“We then who are strong ought to bear with the scruples of the weak, and not to please ourselves.” -Romans 15:1

We are all supposed to be looking out for one another. As the family of Christ, it’s our job to care for our brothers and sisters in Christ. For me, that picture of my family in Christ watching out for me sounds a lot better than me watching out for myself. No matter how strong I am, I can’t bear my own burdens, fears, and doubts. Why? Because I was never created to carry it all alone. The Lord tells us to cast all our cares on Him because he LOVES us and most of the time this is a lot easier said than done. As people, we love to hold onto things and sometimes it takes another believer to come along side us and help us let go of our doubts and worries and surrender them over to the Lord.

God himself is love- thus we cannot love unless we abide in Him and He in us. The only way we can be successful in bearing the burdens of one another is if we are first abiding in the love of Jesus. It will be literally impossible to love one another and bear the burdens of those around us if we are not first going to Jesus and letting Him take our own burdens. We love because He first.

However, we are also told we aren’t to do it to please ourselves- not fruit will come from that. All we do should be with the goal of pleasing the Father. In my life, I’ve tried to manufacture love so many times- making things seem genuine when they aren’t. It’s only when the love flowing from us is from the Father that He is pleased. Anything not coming directly from Him will be a plastic fake love that bring Him no glory. If we start in the right place- abiding in His love and with the end goal of bringing glory to the Father, then bearing the burdens of the weak and carrying the heavy load won’t be so heavy. Jesus comes first. And it is only once we are in Him that we are made strong and can bare the scruples of the weak. We need our family in Christ, yet it is all in vain if it doesn’t first begin with Jesus.

Application: today I’m going to pull aside a teammate and ask what they are struggling with and then pray with them to help bare that burden.

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