More than a Shell
Shells are great for collecting. But if you take them out of the water and put them on a shelf, they all show one main thing: life used to be here but it’s not here any more.
Romans 12:9-16 is about not settling for just the shell of something. Several times in in this passage, God calls us to more than just outward expressions of a commitment to one another, but a heart that is fully engaged as well. With phrases like, "Let love be genuine," "Love one another with brotherly affection," and "Do not be slothful in zeal," Paul makes the point that what matters is what is going on in our hearts towards one another.
We don't want just the shell of love and the shell of honor and the shell of serving one another. We want the real thing; we want the reality of these things. Left to ourselves, this is impossible. The main point from Sunday's message was that the mercies of God make possible the impossible 'one anothers' in Scripture. It's hard to love people with sincerity. It's hard to have zeal in serving one another that is never lagging. Dare I say, this is impossible left to ourselves. But the mercies of God in Romans 12:1 are meant to catch our eyes and give us hope.
So coming out of Sunday's message, here is a question to consider: Are there any ways you've been content just going through the motions of 'one anothering'? Have you settled for the shell of something void of it's reality? To whatever degree this is true, there is hope as we repent and fix our gaze afresh on the mercies of God poured out on us richly because of Christ.
Have a blessed week!