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The Intersection

"May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had." Romans 15:5 NIV

Every adventure out of the house these days seems to be an experience of impatience and short tempers. For example, I stopped at an intersection a few days ago and heard horns blaring from different directions. It was not apparent that anyone was doing anything unusual or offensive, so my only conclusion was that whatever someone was doing didn't meet everyone else's expectations or they were simply in a hurry. Thankfully, everyone got through the intersection and hopefully arrived at their final destinations safely.

While we’re often impatient with each other, God has infinite patience with us. Although our sins are far more severe than ignoring the “no turn on red” light and blowing through a yellow (not that I’m suggesting you do either), God continuously extends his grace. When we repent and ask for forgiveness, he gives it freely, and through the Holy Spirit, he provides us with the encouragement and strength not to make the same mistakes over and over.

The human and divine Jesus displayed the same qualities as the Father when he came to earth. Can you imagine the genuinely human Jesus blasting his horn–or worse–because he and the disciples were late getting to the next stop on their journey? “Outta my way, I’ve got people to preach to and miracles to perform!” Wouldn't these actions be inconsistent with Christ’s mission?

This may be a silly example, but we are to emulate his behavior in taking on the name Christian. In those times when our humanness is being tested, those horn-blaring moments of life, we must recall how Jesus responded in situations far worse than our slight current irritation and, with like-mindedness, extend forgiveness to others—perhaps responding with a smile and a wave–heaping heads on the coals on their heads (Rm 12:20) instead of honking our horns.

Gracious God, thank you for your consistent patience and compassion for us. We confess we do not always respond to others this same way. Father, please forgive us once again and help us become more like the example of Christ. Amen.


Pastor Tim

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