"As I have loved you, so you must love one another." John 13:34
A new church member wrote to the pastor: "The first thing that struck me when I came to your church was the people. They were warm, friendly, and caring. They care about you every day of the week as well as on Sunday. They help not only each other but everyone who comes to the church. They love." That's the way it should be. In a world full of selfishness and hate, the church is to be an oasis of love in the community.
Martin Luther said that Jesus' followers are to be little Christs. Jesus helped and healed people. We are to be a healing influence -- to encourage one another, help the needy, and visit the sick. Jesus taught people. We are to listen to His Word and study it. We are to teach the faith in the home and church. Our Lord came to seek and save the lost. We are to strive to bring others into the church. We are to support generously and pray earnestly for our church's missionary efforts.
Jesus loves the church and gave Himself up for it. We show love for the church by being good representatives of Jesus wherever we are. We strengthen fellow believers by sharing the Good News of Jesus. We ask God to give our pastor love, wisdom, strength, and zeal and to give our congregation a spirit of unity and love.
PRAYER: Spirit of God, make our congregation strong and united in Your Holy Word. Move us to reach out to the unchurched; for Jesus' sake. Amen.
(Devotions from "The Abundant Life" copyright 1998, CPH. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be printed, reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission of Concordia Publishing House. Permission is granted for one-time e-mailing of this link to a friend. For information on other devotional material, please contact CPH at 800-325-3040 or visit CPH at www.cph.org.)
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