Relax and listen. Consciously prepare to hear God’s Word. Clear your mind of the worries and tasks that lie before you. Open your heart and allow it to refresh.
2 John 1-13 (NRSV)
The elder to the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth, and not only I but also all who know the truth, because of the truth that abides in us and will be with us forever:
Grace, mercy, and peace will be with us from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, in truth and love.
I was overjoyed to find some of your children walking in the truth, just as we have been commanded by the Father. But now, dear lady, I ask you, not as though I were writing you a new commandment, but one we have had from the beginning, let us love one another. And this is love, that we walk according to his commandments; this is the commandment just as you have heard it from the beginning—you must walk in it.
Many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh; any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist! Be on your guard, so that you do not lose what we have worked for, but may receive a full reward. Everyone who does not abide in the teaching of Christ, but goes beyond it, does not have God; whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. Do not receive into the house or welcome anyone who comes to you and does not bring this teaching; for to welcome is to participate in the evil deeds of such a person.
Although I have much to write to you, I would rather not use paper and ink; instead I hope to come to you and talk with you face to face, so that our joy may be complete.
The children of your elect sister send you their greetings.
In Tennessee, spring arrived early this year. Unseasonably warm days throughout the winter brought blooming flowers and trees in February even though today is officially the first day of spring. No one has complained of the milder weather this year, but many have wondered if we will be surprised with snow in March or April.
It’s fun to watch the flowers and trees bloom. There is a definite pattern to the blooming season. Each tree and flower comes up on the schedule God has given it. Buttercups are some of the earliest flowers to bloom. They obediently push their way up and testify to God’s promise of life and hope. Recently friends went to Gatlinburg, Tennessee, for a vacation. They were blessed to see buttercups blooming where wildfires had burned so much vegetation and property. Even in pictures, the beautiful yellow flowers were a stark contrast to the blackened earth.
When we walk in truth, we are faithful witnesses to God’s love and promise of life and hope. When we love one another, we share in the witness of God’s amazing grace and love. Love conquers evil every time. Truth and light drive out darkness every time. Today, walk boldly in truth and love.
Precious God, thank you for being the truth and the light. Thank you for your love. Help us to walk boldly in truth, love, and light! Help us to drive out darkness by shining the light of your love in this world. Amen.
Go with God.