Read: John 13:34-35, Acts 2:41-47

Reflect: Contemporary American culture tends to elevate individual identity, rights, and expression above all other values. Our citizens are legally guaranteed freedom to “the pursuit of happiness.” Fine. But what happens when the object of your happiness conflicts with the object of my happiness? We use technology to build individualized, designer worlds in which an individual always gets what he or she wants and is never disappointed, inconvenienced, or even has to consider another’s needs.

In that sense, the Christian life is radically counter-cultural. From wildly different men and women, Jesus built a unified faith-family around Himself with this basic conviction: spiritual transformation happens in spiritual community. They ate meals, celebrated, grieved, learned, trained, worshiped, questioned, faced conflict, confessed, were encouraged, and held accountable – together. And all the while, they grasped the sturdy depth of Jesus’ love and were being made like Him.

So, it’s no surprise that in His last week, Jesus is often with His little faith-family. The Christian life was never meant to be a solitary spiritual journey. We connect because love requires another. Christians share the ups and downs of ordinary life, help one another grow like Jesus, and stay faithful to His mission – together.

Ponder:

  • Are you currently in Jesus-centered, gospel-intentional relationships with other Christians?
  • Whom can you pour gospel encouragement into this week?

Pray: Lord, I am blessed to be in Your family. Give me strength to resist the pull of a private faith and grace to fully embrace life together with Your people.

Global Hope: Pray that the people of Portugal will hear the call to join Jesus’ forever family.