There is a story that is told of Salvation Army founder William Booth. In his later years and in frail health, he was invited to say a word of encouragement to a convocation. Unable to attend, he sent a telegram with a simple yet powerful message. It had one word on it: "Others."
Philippians 2:3-4: "Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others."
Here are eight things that I hope, by God's grace, you will start to do for others.
I Will Love One Another
The last command that Jesus gave His disciples before He was crucified was: "A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another." (John 13:34-35). Jesus gave this command right after He washed His disciples' feet. He wanted to illustrate that this kind of love serves one another and not because we deserve it.
I Will Receive One Another
Romans 15:7 says "Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God." It's so important that churches receive all who enter their doors — especially those who are weak in their faith: "Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations" (Romans 14:1). Paul exhorts us not to argue with a person about things that are doubtful such as the way a person looks or how refined his manners are.
I Will Greet One Another
A greeting is an outward acknowledgment of an inner shared life. Romans 16:16 says, "Salute one another with an holy kiss. The churches of Christ salute you." We need to great each other personally, impartially, thoughtfully, and wisely. How important is a friendly greeting? One study showed that a visitor decides whether or not he likes a church within the first twelve minutes.
I Will Care For One Another
"For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked. That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another." (1 Corinthians 12:24-25). God wants us to minister to each other and what better way to do that than through the church.
I Will Submit To One Another
Ephesians 5:18-21 says, "And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God." Submission is one equal willingly and lovingly placing himself under another equal that Jesus Christ may be glorified.
I Will Forbear One Another
Forbearance is to graciously endure and put up with sinful attitudes in others. Ephesians 4:1-3 says, "I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace."
I Will Confess To One Another
James 5:16 says, "Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." The failure to do this holds back forgiveness, healing, and revival more than anything else.
I Will Forgive One Another
Ephesians 4:32 says, "And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you." God has so willingly and freely forgiven us, we should forgive others. To forgive you must taste a little of Calvary. But it is worth the price. Forgive quickly, genuinely, and completely.
Now, your list is complete with eight things that will help build the sweetest fellowship this side of heaven! Pray over each and every one: "Lord, let me live for others that I may live for Thee." When you and others begin to do that, you will become a colony of heaven.
When we come to Him in repentance and faith, we are empowered-and expected-to live the Christian life not by trying, but by trusting. Faith is not only how we receive salvation, it is how we walk, day by day, in grace. Only by faith can we extend forgiveness to others, share God's truth, and leave a godly legacy. As the tapestry of your life unfolds, may you begin to see the wonders of living each day, moment by moment, a life of faith and forgiveness.