Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Commitment and Interests of Others.

Tonight I've got a lot on my mind, and the recurring thoughts seem to be centered on this: commitment. How committed are we to our friends and family members? Do we take time out of our busy schedules to listen to others or are we too tied up in our own interests to really pay attention to their needs, and much less, their interests that perhaps don't interest us at all?

I'll be honest, it's hard for me to take interest in the interests of others, especially when it doesn't relate to me. For example, my brother Christopher loves playing video games. He spends a good amount of his free time on his iPod and at the TV playing Nintendo games and other games that I don't have a clue what they are. When I come to talk to him, Christopher usually starts excitedly telling me about the latest level that he's just beat or he mentions a new game that he can't wait to buy at Game Stop. I find it difficult to pay attention and listen to what he's saying because it doesn't relate to me, and frankly, I'm lost when he gets into the little details, but as his older sister I ought to at least pay attention to him and try to understand because it shows that I care. Yes, I might come away still as clueless as before, but if I make an effort to listen then I'll feel better about the effort I made to show him I care.

The Bible says this about how we are to relate to the interests of others:

Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. -Philippians 2:4

The next verse is even more convicting:

You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. -Philippians 2:5

There is so much that can be said about the above verse and I won't be able to cover all it entails here, but the most important thing to remember is that Christ humbled himself and took on the nature of a servant. If he had the attitude of a servant and we are called to have the same attitude that Christ had, then what should our attitudes look like? They should look resemble the attitudes of servants who love their master. Servants willingly do whatever their master asks of them and take an interest in the hobbies and interests of their master too. As servants of Christ, we ought to be interested in and care about the things that Christ cares about. How interested are you in the things that concern Jesus?

How committed are you to those God has placed in your life? Do you take the time to pray for a friend who's just lost a loved one to cancer? Are you intentional about responding to the needs of others, even when you'd rather not?

If we're going to live like Jesus and really carry out what it means to follow him daily, we're going to need to be concerned about what Jesus is concerned about. I'll give you a couple of hints about some people that Jesus specifically cares about: orphans, widows, the poor, those who are sick, the weak, the lost, etc. (Read the Parable of the Lost Sheep, The Lost Coin, and the Parable of the Lost Son in Luke 15 to see how much God cares about the lost.) I've only covered the lost that Jesus cares about, and yet there are many, many more groups of people that Jesus cares about. You can find multiple stories of God's loving kindness towards such people in the Bible.

How will you respond today? Is there someone that you need to write to and let them know you care? Let's show the world how committed we are to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ by loving those he's placed in our care.

Love in Christ,

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