Archive for the ‘Christians’ Tag

CHRISTMAS HYMN FOR WORSHIP

O come, all ye faithful,
joyful and triumphant,
O come ye, O come ye, to Bethlehem!
Come and behold Him, born the King of angels!

Refrain:
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ, the Lord!

Sing choirs of angels,
sing in exultation,
O sing, all ye citizens of heaven above!
Glory to God, all glory in the highest!

Refrain

Yea, Lord, we greet Thee,
born this happy morning,
Jesus, to Thee be all glory given;
Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing!

Refrain

—O Come, All Ye Faithful; Anonymous, Latin, 18th century
Translated by Frederick Oakeley, 1841, and others

LOOK TO JESUS

Why is there so little compassion shown today in a United States so full of hurting people? Is it because we all have our own agendas? Let’s explore that notion.

Most people today care primarily about themselves. We all have our own little hurts to nurse, perceiving them as larger, more painful, and less manageable than someone else’s burdens. Therefore, most people don’t express genuine compassion for someone who’s having difficulty, unless it involves a response to a local or national tragedy. They don’t act to help when confronted with another’s pain. Not even a kind word do they utter. Exceptions, of course, include people involved in service organizations and true Christians.

Understanded, people may not comprehend another’s plight. For example, who of us understands the difficulties of someone suffering from a mental illness? Professionals who treat them understand to a greater degree. Family members are baffled by symptoms, reacting with surprise or anger to the person’s inappropriate words and bizarre actions.

However, family members often feel the pain of the afflicted one, wishing they could take the pain away. The best they can do is get their loved one to a psychiatrist who can begin the difficult search for an effective drug therapy. A social worker can assist by sifting through issues to affect successful coping mechanisms for the patient and bring healing to the family.

But what about society as a whole? We’ve been derailed by the media who has further stigmatized mental illness. The media has led us to believe that any severely violent act is the work of someone with a typical mental illness and that mentally ill people are dangerous unless properly medicated.

Reliable studies and statistics have shown that a much smaller percentage of the mentally ill have violent tendencies than people without the illness. These nonviolent people languished away in mental hospitals years ago when effective treatments did not exist. Now that most people with mental illness live within our communities, they are either treated with indifference, shunned, degraded, or feared. Few people treat them with respect.

How can we develop compassion? I think most of us need an adjustment only God can offer, for only God can change a heart. We need to learn to value each person equally as God does. And we need to consider other’s needs to be as important as our own needs. Only then can genuine compassion exist. Jesus said, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another” (John 13:34) and “‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself'” (Mat 19:19).

The next time you see someone struggling with any type of illness, offer a kind word with an air of friendliness. Step out of your comfort zone. Show interest in what they do or introduce them to a new hobby that may help them heal. We all need a friend. Jesus was this friend and healer to the downtrodden He encountered during His earthly ministry. Follow Jesus’ example.

None of us should live with only our own agenda in mind. God will reward you for your acts of compassion. You will be richly blessed.

—Scripture Quotations from NKJV—

WHO WILL GO

What higher calling can Christians receive, than to be commissioned to teach others about our precious Savior Jesus? This calling is, in fact, our duty. Will you go?

When Jesus commissioned His disciples He said, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age”(Matt 28:18-20). The commission extends to all his followers. This Great Commission was brought front and center in a sermon delivered at my church this past Sabbath.

On reflection, I realized the importance of our telling others about Jesus. Can anyone grow as a Christian if they don’t share their faith? It is like a muscle that needs to be used to grow strong. Can we love others if we don’t share Jesus with them? Is the teaching to be left up to the ministers alone or are we all expected to pass on what we know about Jesus? The Biblical truths we’ve been taught, Biblical nuggets we’ve discovered individually, and precious truths God has communicated to us through our personal experiences are all ripe for teaching.

Jesus’ admonition to not hide our lights under a bushel basket echoes sharing of our faith by modeling our Christianity.

The process of our calling involves accepting the call, and then taking action by helping our co-workers in Christ deliver the rich, saving message concerning Him. This is to prepare them for baptism, bringing them into the Body of Christ.

It seems like a hefty job to broadcast the Good News to all the world. But this we know — Christ promised in the Great Commission to be with us. We don’t have to worry. He is, in His love for souls, right beside us.

(Quoted Scripture from NKJV.)

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