In our new series LoveONEAnother we have been looking at the idea of community particularly through the prayer that Jesus prayed for the Church's unity in John 17. This IN LIFE Sunday we continue our community-focused journey as we hear from Anna and Mark about their real life experiences and passion for God's community.
How is God connected to himself? And us to each other? And together we all connect in this thing we call community? John 17 remindes us how central community is to God's plan and Jesus' prayer. This week we take another look at God's ultimate plan of creating community by taking a few steps to the side to look at it from another angle.
Today we explored God's invitation in Psalm 46 which is once again an expression of His love for us and our acceptance to 'be still' is an expression of our love for him. Consider what might 'the world is falling apart' might be in your experience and how knowing God can bring you refuge and strength. Also what does to 'be still' look like for you right now?
Is it possible in the busyness of life, the pain of our own brokenness, and even in living a life of love, to just enjoy being LOVED by God? Among the works Christ has planned for us what does it look like to find rest? Are we only loved so we can love others? What if we are primarily loved because we are loved? Could God's love for us be an end in itself rather than always for the purpose of our response? Perhaps this is where we would find rest - drawing aside, pausing, taking intermissions to regularly rest in His love!
Reading through Ephesians it is pretty easy to formulate a list of what a life that is YES to God looks like. But what if it's not a list? What if it's more like a portrait, a masterpiece in the making? And what if instead of it being burdensome, a life that is YES to God is actually one of rest?
What defines you - who you are or what you do? Does what we do determine who we are or is it who we are that produces what we do?
If we are indeed new creations and have become YES to God what's going on when we don't act like it? Its time to not lose heart but to stand firm in front of the mirror and see ourselves as our Father in heaven does - as a much loved daughter or son who is forgiven, accepted and good!
Living a life that is YES to God is a battle because we live in a world and have a nature that is NO to God. This InLife Sunday Campbell and Andrew had a conversation around this and the conflict that each of us has between being YES or NO to God.