Let’s Encourage One Another!
Chris' corner -- Sunday, January 2, 2022
Fond memories flood our minds when we think of Christian brethren who have passed through our doors and hearts over this past year. Some folks moved away or went to other congregations, but many others left this world to join the faithful who are waiting for the Lord's return and their promised home in heaven. We are thankful for the Lord's church, the family of God, both here on earth and in the realm beyond.
Now, as we enter into a brand-new year, we recognize the Lord's work will continue. We anticipate greater opportunities and challenges in evangelism. So many around us do not know the Lord and His incredible love and grace. We have His command to search out the lost and introduce them to the saving message of the gospel, which God worked to bring to light since time began.
Quoting Isaiah 61:1, 2, Luke wrote, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD" (Luke 4:18, 19).
We look forward to the many opportunities we will have to edify our brethren and members of God's family, the church. With so many scriptures about loving the brotherhood, encouraging and strengthening each other, it is evident that many folks (including ourselves) need a boost regularly.
Paul said, "Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing" (1 Thessalonians 5:11).
He wrote to the Colossians, "...that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ" (2:2).
Paul told his beloved Philippians, "Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind" (2:1–2).
Looking back, I cannot help but express my profound gratitude to God, and all of you, for allowing my family and me, to experience the joys of working with the River Road congregation these many years. Indeed, it has been a tremendous blessing for the majority of my life!
Happy New Year! We pray God will help us have a heart of love and compassion in this New Year. May we become more observant and step in to help when we see our brothers and sisters in need of some love and encouragement. “Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love…”