May 17, 2021
But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children. So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us. 1 Thessalonians 2:7-9
In this beautiful depiction of Paul’s past commitment to the young in faith in the Thessaloniki church, we learn what it means to embody the Gospel as Christ’s ambassadors. Like a gentle mother who cares for her own, we are to share the good news with gentle words of conviction and offer our very selves (our time, attention, and resources) to ensure the growth of the spiritually newborn.
The first step (sharing the Gospel) is more rewarding for most people and demands less of us. The second element (embodying the Gospel) exacts a more personal and sacrificial part of us that we are not always keen to share. It requires us to be transparent and draw near to those whose lives are a hot mess. Yet, that is exactly what Christ did for his disciples and what others have done for us. And something amazing happens when we do pay it forward. Those to whom we give our very selves for the sake of the Gospel become “dear to us.”
Father God, deepen our understanding of what it means to embody your Gospel for the sake of others and grant us your grace to do so. Amen.
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling