“And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.” (1 Thessalonians 5:14)
By some counts there are between 50 and 60 “one anothers” in Scripture – those instructions on how we are to treat those around us. The verse above includes four of them. As I was preparing to teach on this verse, I found a profound perspective among the study Bibles and commentaries I consulted.
As we live out our faith, we will encounter people along the way who appear to be idle, those who seem to be doing nothing for the Kingdom of God. But often it is difficult to determine if their lack of involvement is truly due to laziness and apathy, or if there may be overwhelming discouragement, or weakness of some sort. As one commentator concluded, “The key to ministry is sensitivity: sensing the condition of each person and offering the appropriate remedy for each situation. You can’t effectively help until you know the problem. You can’t apply the medicine until you know where the wound is.”
Don’t presume you know the reasons for what others do (or don’t do). Instead, take the time to learn the real issues so you can determine where to apply the medicine they need. –Dave
(To receive these free daily devotions via email, subscribe at: http://www.theteachableheart.com/blogs—daily-devotions.html)