Warm WelcomeHow does warm hospitality reflect God’s loving heart?
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When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash (Matthew 7:27).
In the past few years, my kids and I started a Christmas tradition of making gingerbread houses with some friends. Last year, as we prepared to go meet with the others, I gathered our supplies and noted with concern that the baked product didn’t seem quite hard enough. Later, my dread grew as the first house collapsed before the pieces were connected. Fortunately, we had enough extra pieces to make another one. Decorated and shored up with extra frosting, the finished product made it to the front seat of our car . . . only to collapse into pieces a few minutes later.
God’s attributes include mercy and grace, but He is also holy and righteous. His Word reveals who He is and what He desires from us. John 1:14 says, “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth” (NASB). If we believe that His Word is the truth, then we should live it out in obedience. Romans 12:1 reminds us that to be in relationship with Him is to live as if our will does not matter. It also tells us to expect transformation to be inherent in our Christian experience. Anything less isn’t the true gospel.
The destruction of a house built on sand isn’t immediate. It’s only when the storms come that the devastation is made evident, and not even an extreme makeover can make what has been unholy appear good (Ezekiel 13:10).
Even a broken gingerbread house serves as a reminder that we can’t live by what seems to be right. We must live what is true.
by Regina Franklin
Read Ephesians 4:21 to see some practical ways our lives should reflect the change brought through the working of the Holy Spirit.
In what ways has our culture tried to water down the gospel to make it palatable for certain people to receive? How is embracing only part of God’s truth holding fast to a lie?
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