Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Be the Church (Love) - XIV

"Always trusts" is the next quality of love. It is another quality stated differently in different versions. "Always trusts", "believes all things" and "never loses faith" are some examples.

The original word is usually translated in some form of "I believe" in the Bible, and it is used for all variations of that.

  • I believe you -- meaning I think you are telling the truth.
  • I believe in you -- meaning I am confident of your abilities.
  • I believe in you -- meaning I trust you ... with my life, to do the right thing, with my money.
  • I believe in you -- meaning I am behind you, I support you, I am committed to you.
I tend to view this as the last definition mentioned: to stand with, to be  committed to other people.

If a person gets married, it doesn't take too long for he\she to realize that there are habits, traits and tendencies that they don't like in their partner. That person could follow the trend of modern society and divorce their partner for not being perfect. It is love that motivates people to choose to be committed in spite of failures.

The family of Jesus should be an inclusive group. Everyone is welcome. Young/old. Rich/poor. Male/female. Black/white/yellow/green/purple. Allegiance to Jesus should be given from every single type of background. (There is a place in the Bible describing heaven. Every nation, tribe, and language was represented as standing in God's presence.)
If everyone is welcome, there will be different foods, different manners, and different jokes. There will be people whose sense of modesty, morality and work ethic will be different. Those entering Jesus' family will naturally see their habits, practices, preferences and cultural norms as being jsut as valued as the family they are joining.

It is this commitment to one another that begins the unity, builds trust and facilitates God's transforming work in people's lives. It is certainly this willingness to embrace and endure differences in people -- cultural and lifestyle -- that will demonstrate God's love and his family's love.

NOTE: I am beginning to wonder if the last four qualities are intended to stand together. Four qualities that affect the way Jesus' family should view, interact and deal with people who are different, who do not fully embrace the Jesus-lifestyle, but who are God's children.

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