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Be Good…

Acts 5:13b the people spoke highly of [the believers].

 Years ago I read an article in a Christian publication which said that good Christians often make poor neighbors. As many such things, the writer had a very valid point. It is possible to be doing so many things in the Church—committees, meetings, etc.—we never have time to live in the world. This raises a very important question. How can we be effective witnesses?

            We can be GOOD NEIGHBORS. This has always been God’s plan for His people. When the Israelites were going into exile in Babylon, God told them:

Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce.  Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters….Seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile.  Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”  (Jer. 29:5-7)

It is the other half of a disciple’s duty. Jesus said to “love God”and “love your neighbor.” In the book of Acts we are told of the early Christians, “the people held them in high honor.”

            The article mentioned above told the story of Fern Nichols. She was concerned about her two boys who were about to enter public junior high school. She prayed that God would lead her to just one other Christian mother who would pray with her for an hour a week.

            The result was a ministry the enlists mothers to pray together for their children and schools. Initially called “Moms-In-Touch,” “Moms in Prayer” as it is now called has made a difference in schools all over the world. Thousands of groups of moms in the United States and 140 other countries are used by God in schools and in their children. https://momsinprayer.org/who-we-are/history/

We can be GOOD CHURCH PEOPLE. The Christian life is not to be lived in the Church but in the world.

             A wonderful invention, which we take for granted, is rechargable batteries. We plug in everything from screwdrivers to electric cars, unplug them and they do all kinds of jobs. Christians are “plugged in” church to live in the world.

            It enables us to avoid seduction, the world changing us. Instead, we can change the world. It lets us know we are not alone. And as Tony Compolo said, “We remind each other that it’s the world that is crazy and not the values we find in the Word of God.”

But we can’t forget that the church is not just a means to an end. It is a worthy enterprise in and of itself. It is the home of Jesus on Earth (John 14:23) and, as such, is a model of true community.

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