Thursday, November 03, 2016

November 3, 2016: Testify to Love

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2016 - Day 308  

Devotional Song:  … GO TO THIS LINK …  Please take the time to take in a YouTube video of images and lyrics from the group Avalon singing … Testify To Love … singing of how we, as Christians, should become testimonies of God’s love to others.

Highlight Verse[s]: Philemon 9-10 [NKJV] …  
9 yet for love’s sake I rather appeal to you—being such a one as Paul, the aged, and now also a prisoner of Jesus Christ— 10 I appeal to you for my son Onesimus, whom I have begotten while in my chains, … 
... Paul appeals to one he had led to Christ to have mercy and give grace to a former slave of Philemon’s whom Paul also led to Christ.
Highlight Context: Philemon 8-18 [NKJV] … USE THIS LINK 
… Paul pleads for Philemon to show love to his runaway slave, Onesimus.

Reference Passage #1 … John 13:34-35 [NKJV] …  
34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” 
… Jesus’ commandment to love one another.

 My Journal for Today:  … Our Daily Bread author, David McCasland, in teaching about spiritual leaders, wrote: In his book Spiritual Leadership, J. Oswald Sanders explores the qualities and the importance of tact and diplomacy. “Combining these two words,” Sanders says, “the idea emerges of skill in reconciling opposing viewpoints without giving offense and without compromising principle.” 

And that’s the leadership and communication skill shown by Paul when he had to write to a fellow Christian, Philemon, on behalf of Philemon’s runaway slave, Onesimus, pleading with Philemon to forgive Onesimus and allow him to return to him in love [see today’s highlight passage].

Paul could have strongly exhorted this reconciliation and mercy from Philemon, having led him to Christ earlier; but he didn’t command him to love. No, he pleaded with Philemon to do what Christ commands of all His disciples (see John 13:34-35): and that is to love one another. It’s Christ’s law of love (see attached photo); and “Love Always Wins!”

And the message is clear to me from this ODB entry today. What can I do to overcome my human feelings today and do what Avalon sings in today’s linked song, … “Testify to Love!” … Is there someone whom I need to forgive or with whom I need to reconcile? … Can I help someone today who needs helping? … Will I be a testimony of love for my Savior today?

My Prayer Today: Heavenly Father, … Lord, give me Your grace to reach out and be a witness of Your love to someone today. … Amen  

Blogger Note:  Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online devotional blog entitled Our Daily Bread, distributed online via email by RBC Ministries.  If you GO TO THIS LINK on the date of my blog, you can read/study the ODB blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.

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