Colossians 3:18-4:18; Ezekiel 31-32; Isaiah 56
The Christian faith is very exclusive. As followers of Christ, most of us believe that there is only one way to establish a relationship with God and that is through Jesus: the one who died to pay the penalty for our sins on the cross. It is inconceivable that God would allow His Son to suffer so much to pay that penalty and then turn around and say that all these other ways are ok too. So orthodox Christian faith is very exclusive. At the same time, there is no faith system that is more inclusive than Christianity. As followers of Christ we believe that Jesus died on that cross so that anyone who believes in Him can return to God and have that relationship with Him restored. It doesn’t matter what your ethnic background may be – we believe that God wants to restore that relationship with You. It doesn’t matter what your station in life may be: rich, poor, employed, unemployed, retired or any other designation; God wants to restore that relationship with you. Paul reminds followers of Christ what our responsibility is. “Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time.” (Colossians 4:5) As we encounter those who are outside the faith, we are to live wisely among them. Our lives should reflect the change that Jesus has made in them. When we live as followers of Christ we redeem that time we are with those who are not followers by showing and telling them about the difference that the love of Jesus can make in a life. We live in a world where we are almost always surrounded by those outside the faith. May our lives show forth the love and grace of God to all we meet; may we redeem that time with them.
Lord, there is only one way to restore my relationship with You. I thank You for that gift that You provided in Jesus. I also thank You that this gift was not provided just for me or for a select few. You have made it possible for each and every person to know You. Let my life each day draw others to Your goodness and mercy.