Summer days are slipping by quickly, aren’t they?
Today I am delighted to share with you a guest post from my friend Katy Kauffman. Katy has been a true encourager in my writing journey. Her friendship, support, and wisdom have been a special gift. The picture below is from the contest awards banquet at Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference in May. Congratulations to Katy for winning the Selah award for her Bible study, Faith, Courage, and Victory. I’m holding Foundation awards for online article (1st) and non-fiction book (3rd). I’m thankful for Katy’s editing help with my non-fiction book!
Wear Your Jersey
I loved playing scrimmage games with my church’s basketball team in high school. Some of the moms joined in as well, and it was fun seeing them block players and trying to make shots. The tough part was remembering who NOT to pass the ball to, since we all were wearing street clothes. That problem was easily fixed, however, come game time.
Just as the members of a team wear the same colored jerseys to identify whose team they’re on, the members of Christ’s “team”—the Church—wear the same jersey of love.
[tweetthis hidden_urls=”#loveoneanother”]“By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35 NKJV[/tweetthis]
The identifying mark of a true believer in Christ is love. Giving love, selfless love, the kind of love that Jesus Himself gives out. If we learn from Jesus, if we’re His disciples, we will learn to love like He does. And oh, the world needs this kind of love!
Wars, heartache, the misery and pain that sin causes—these are the results of a world that lives apart from God’s love. As members of the church, let’s walk in this world as a healing balm, as a light that pierces the darkness, as a team of believers whose mission is to share the love and truth of God with those who desperately need it.
Here are a dozen practical ways that we can show God’s love to one another this summer:
- Invite a family to church, especially to a special event, and sit together. Go to lunch or go for ice cream afterwards.
- Take notice of the clerks in your local grocery store, and ask them how their day is going.
- If a waiter or waitress is having a stressful day, show kindness by asking how you can pray for them and leave a generous tip.
- React kindly when you could react harshly. This will get people’s attention! It will make them wonder why you weren’t mean even if it would have been justified, and it will give grace to the recipient.
- Start a Vacation Bible School for kids in your neighborhood, and give your own children jobs to do during the week. See if other parents want to help organize one.
- Ask your church’s pastoral care minister (or the church secretary) if you can visit someone in the hospital or make food and take it to someone’s house.
- Ask someone in your church’s youth ministry if they need volunteers for special events. You’re likely to have as much fun as the kids do.
- Look for ways to verbally share the gospel. We can live out the love of God every day, but He also wants us to be ready to say the words that will minister to someone’s soul and lead them to faith in Christ. Someone said the words to us!
- Participate on a short term mission trip. Pray about opportunities that your church provides, and go where God sends you.
- Restart that hobby that you put aside during the school year, and make crafty things for shut-ins or people precious to your family. If you have children, get them involved in making crafts!
- Pray, pray, pray. Listen to people’s prayer requests, and write them down. Or if the prayer need is urgent, pray on the spot with them. Take time each day to pray for others’ concerns.
- Do something special for your family members that tells them you’re thinking of them. Put candy in their shoes, notes on their pillows, or take them out for an excursion. The ones who are closest to us need to know they’re loved, too.
What are some practical ways that you like to show the love of Christ? Tell us in the comments below, and remember how much God loves you. That kind of love we can’t keep secret. I’m putting on my jersey today. Are you wearing yours?
Katy Kauffman is a co-founder of Lighthouse Bible Studies, a ministry which seeks to connect people to God through His Word. She has taught the Bible to women and teens, and has two published Bible studies for women, 2 Timothy: Winning the Victory and Faith, Courage, and Victory. Her heart’s desire is for people to know and love God, understand the richness of His Word, and fulfill His plan for their lives. Katy is also an editor and the designer of Refresh Bible Study Magazine. You can connect with her at her blog, Life with God, and on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.