“And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” Hebrews 10:24-25
“Consider” means to “contemplate” or “observe.” Are you considering your brothers and sisters in Christ, observing them in love as you would observe a child you are mentoring?
The writer of Hebrews tells us that the purpose of this observation is to stir up love and good works. The words “stir up” mean to “convulse,” to have a great impact on someone or to influence that person forcefully. Some of the Jewish Christians at the time of the writing of Hebrews were withdrawing from fellowship because of the persecution that they were experiencing. They were actually thinking about returning to the temple and participating in the blood sacrifices, even though they knew that Jesus’ sacrifice of His own blood paid for their sins once and for all time.
Today, some Christians stay away from church and fellow believers for different reasons. When you’re suffering loss or pain, don’t you retreat? I know that I do. I withdraw from people. If I’m in pain, I stay close to home. I want to guard myself from additional pain.
That’s true when someone has offended us. We tend to stay away from that person and the environment in which that person is fellowshipping.
Or maybe you’ve sinned, and you’re ashamed. Perhaps one of the church members knows about your sin. You don’t want to encounter that person because of your shame, so you stay away. Could it be that the person who knows about your sin is praying for you and wants to show his love to you – if you would only come back to the fellowship?
Perhaps, you’re just frazzled with all the things you have to do, and you decide to stay home and sleep in.
In our pain, in our shame, in our daily busyness, we’re told not to forsake gathering together; rather, the writer states that we are to exhort or encourage each other.
We need each other! Especially in today’s helter/skelter world of outrage and pain.
3 Tips to Consider Others
- Consider others in the Painful Life.
- Jesus indicated that followers who comfort and minister to those who are suffering will be blessed by the Father as heirs to the kingdom. “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. ‘For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.” Matthew 25:34-36
- Jesus fed the thousands, raised the dead, calmed the seas, and healed all who came to Him. He isn’t asking us to perform miracles, although they do happen today. He is asking us to meet people where they are and minister to them.
- Today, there is a fellow believer who is suffering. You can comfort that brother or sister, even if it is only with your presence. Won’t you reach out today and consider your brother, your sister?
- Consider the one in the Shameful Life.
- Jesus died willingly because you and I sinned; He paid the price for your sins and my sins when He died on the cross. “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.” John 15:13
- Jesus loved us so much that He paid the ultimate price for our shame, and each person at your church has experienced the shame of sin that nailed Jesus to the cross.
- Perhaps, there’s a sinner like you who you can minister to if you go to that Bible study, that church service, or that prayer meeting today.
- Consider those who live the Busy Life.
- Jesus was in the house of Lazarus, Mary, and Martha. Martha was scurrying around trying to prepare a great meal for Jesus and all the disciples, but Mary was sitting at His feet listening to Him. Martha asked Jesus to tell Mary to get up and help her. “But the Lord answered her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things, but one thing is needed. Mary has chosen the best part; it will not be taken away from her.’” Luke 10:41-42
- Have you considered that there might be someone at church who is more frazzled than you, and that person could use some encouragement? Together, you might go get coffee after church and discuss your “To Do” lists, strategize how to prioritize (putting God first and then your other responsibilities), and come away energized.
So consider one another;
stir up one another
to love and good works.
Our Father, You know our pain, our shame, and our busy lives. You know them intimately. And You love us despite of our failings. Thank You. Make us more aware of others. Help us to consider others in love and find ways to minister to them. Cause us to desire fellowship with other believers. Equip us to stir up one another, to minister to them, and to love them. We desire, Father, to honor You and to bless You. Thank you for blessing us beyond our imaginations. We love You, glorious Lord. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Please share tips on how to minister to others in the Comments Section.