God calls us to show care and compassion to one another. When a church family does this in community with each other, it is powerful beyond belief: needs are met, people are encouraged, lives are changed.
Because of the way that God has worked in our lives, we know that He is a caring God. And because the Spirit of God now lives inside each of us as followers of Christ, He empowers us and shows us how to care for others. In 1 Thessalonians chapter 5, the Bible gives us seven ways that we can practically show care for one another.
1 Thessalonians 5:11-14 (HCSB)
11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up as you are already doing. 12 Now we ask you, brothers, to give recognition to those who labor among you and lead you in the Lord and admonish you, 13 and to regard them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves. 14 And we exhort you, brothers: warn those who are irresponsible, comfort the discouraged, help the weak, be patient with everyone.
1. We show care by encouraging one another.
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up as you are already doing. (v11)
2. We show care by loving each other with the sacrificial and serving love that is modeled in the person of Jesus Christ.
Now we ask you, brothers, to give recognition to those who labor among you and lead you in the Lord and admonish you, and to regard them very highly in love because of their work. (vv12-13)
3. We show care by living in peace with one another.
Be at peace among yourselves. (v13)
4. We show care by warning each other lovingly if we realize that a friend is becoming spiritually irresponsible, evidenced by the fact that they are living in opposition to the teaching of Christ.
And we exhort you, brothers: warn those who are irresponsible… (v14)
5. We show care by comforting those who are emotionally, mentally or spiritually discouraged.
… comfort the discouraged… (v14)
6. We show care by helping the weak — those who have emotional, spiritually or physical needs.
… help the weak… (v14)
7. We show care by being patient with others.
… be patient with everyone. (v14)
Pretty tall order to live this out perfectly. In Christ and through Christ you can!
That’s why we daily ask God to strengthen us and help us to live out these truths. Ask Him to help you, depend on Him, feel His presence as He strengthens you, and be amazed at His work in and through your life.
Do you care?
If so, then show it.