One of the songs we sang when I was growing up in Sunday School went like this:
Jesus and others and you
That’s the way to spell “joy”…
While the chorus taught truth, I don’t remember that it influenced me much as a kid who just wanted to shoot baskets and ride my bike – especially on Saturday when there was no school or homework to deal with. Saturdays were for me!
But I’m older now,(there’s an understatement if there ever was one) something in Galatians 6 this morning reminded me of those childhood lyrics.
Dear brothers and sisters, if another Christian is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. 2 Share each other’s troubles and problems, and in this way obey the law of Christ. 3 If you think you are too important to help someone in need, you are only fooling yourself. You are really a nobody. 4 Be sure to do what you should, for then you will enjoy the personal satisfaction of having done your work well, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. 5 For we are each responsible for our own conduct. (Galatians 6:1-5)
There it is.
Putting Him first is a prerequisite to my helping anyone else in the faith. “Godly” means “like Him”. I can’t just go to the shop, lift “godliness” off the tool rack and use it to help a brother; no, godliness has to be part of who I am. God first. Jesus first.
I’m I’m like Him I’ll be in a position to help a brother or sister in Christ they way others have helped me through the years. Older influencers in my life have taught me that favors aren’t to be repaid – they’re to be passed along. So to help another in small ways or large is something I can do and enjoy as part of the body of Christ.
I’m noticing how I’m to “take care of me” this morning too. It’s in verses 4 & 5.
- Do what I should
- Enjoy the personal satisfaction of work well done
- No need to compare myself to others
- I’m responsible for me.
Dr. Stowell talked about choices this weekend when he addressed the 2008 graduating class at Cornerstone University. I’ve had a quote from Dr. Stowell in the right hand margin for a while now (look for the roundabout sign). Choices determine direction. They’re definitive.
If I’m considering Christ first – consider those around me, and do my best / do what I should … life promises to be rewarding. Quite! Not just here, not just in Heaven – in BOTH places!
Jesus, and others and you… that IS the way to spell “joy”.