The Sweet Christian Bride

Thought for the Week: Timothy 1:1-2

by admin on December 11, 2011 in Thought for the Week with No Comments

“Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the command of God our Savior and of Christ Jesus our hope, To Timothy my true son in the faith: Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord” (Timothy 1:1-2).

“Dear Sister Hall, Greetings to you in the name of Jesus Christ!” 

This is how Avishek’s emails to me begin.  I met Avishek on my mission trip to Nepal.  He was one of the few who spoke English, so he took every opportunity he could to practice it.  Even now, he emails me in English updates of his family, his ministry, and his prayer requests.  Every email humbles me.  The need for Christ in Nepal looks very different from the need for Christ in America.  Even the  difference in his greetings are stark compared to mine: “Dear Avishek, I hope you are doing well.”  I’ve tried to branch out with openings such as, “Hello in the name of Jesus,” but as you can tell, I haven’t yet embraced the epistle-like greeting. 

Although it seems silly to critique my own email openings, the labored effort in beginning an email to someone who lives similarly to how the apostle Paul lived makes me realize how hard it is for me to identify myself first and foremost as a disciple of Jesus whose purpose is to glorify Him.  In light of that, it’s awkward to explicitly bless or greet a fellow Christian with the truest desire of my heart, which is for all of God’s goodness to be received by him or her.  Avishek seems to grasp all this better than I do, and of course, Paul models it best of all.  The first words off his pen are who he is in Christ and what his hope is for his fellow brother in Christ. 

Wouldn’t it be great if this were how we greeted one another?  It might feel strange, but as you introduce yourself to your vendors, consider introducing them to your most significant identity.  To them that is a potential client, but through your words and actions, you can show them that in actuality, it is a daughter of Christ.  And as you meet up with your bridesmaids or gather with your family, let the first words that roll off your tongue be a blessing for them.  I imagine that the interactions to come will be stripped down to greater authenticity and purpose.

Lord, let me know from the core of my spirit to the words of my tongue who I am because of Christ.  Let my identity in Christ be the lens through which all of my words and desires stem.  And let me greet my brothers and sisters with unashamed (or even awkward) words and deeds of Truth and Love.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Lindsay

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