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  • Writer's picturePapa George

USA – Homes and families, Feb 16, 2023

The New Testament Church was birthed through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ who said, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you love one another.”

(John 13:34-35)

“All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything that had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all. There were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need.”

(Acts 4:32-35)

We are blessed to live in a country where we can gather safely in our church families and donate our money to do amazing outreach to those that are hurt, broken and lost in our communities. Most of the time this doesn’t require much sacrifice from within our own home and family and gives us joy we wouldn’t otherwise have. This makes it possible for many believers to see this as permission to see our home and families as our “rights and privileges” and ignore or overlook seeing them in God’s eyes and simply ask what are our “duties and responsibilities” to God when it comes to “our” home and family and how He wants it be used for His Glory.

Our prayer is that the Body of Christ will begin to examine themselves in light of the way in which the New Testament believers opened their homes and families to help those in need. That we might consider sacrificing the rights and privileges that we have associated with our homes and families for the fulfilling of our duties and responsibilities to the work of the kingdom. We know the kids might not like going back to sharing a bedroom with each other to bring someone new into the family, but they are being taught that either their “home and family” are theirs or God’s.

How is it possible that we can come together in a building to worship as His Body; some coming from living alone, disabled, living through government subsidies, or even in their vehicle and others from homes that they possess and maintain that have empty bedrooms and when we leave nothing outside the building has changed?

“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has material possessions and see his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.”

(1 John 3:16-18)

Unfortunately, our sin nature demands that we decide whether anything that we are involved with is either “good or evil” apart from God. The result for many believers is that, as far as our own home and family are concerned, they are looked at as “rights and privileges” and not from God’s viewpoint of “duties and responsibilities”. Our corporate church programs satisfy our “duties and responsibilities” of taking care of widows and orphans; taking care of the hungry, thirsty, naked, estranged, sick and visiting those in prison; those that are broken-hearted and crushed in spirit and to seek those that are lost. Unless, of course, they are our own family. And sadly, sometimes, not even our own family.

As long as we participate in the ‘church’, then our home and our family belongs to us for the benefit of ourselves. That allows the luxury of seeing our homes and families as our personal “kingdoms” because they are our “rights and privileges” given to us by God to satisfy our own needs thereby avoiding the need to ask God if or how He would like to use even one of our spare bedrooms.

Their is a direct correlation between the accuracy of our memory and the effectiveness of our mission. If we are not teaching people how to be saved, it is perhaps because we have forgotten the tragedy of being lost. If we are not teaching the message of forgiveness, it may be because we don’t remember what it was like to be guilty. And if we are not teaching the cross, it could be that we’ve subconsciously decided that somehow we don’t need it.” Max Lucado

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