Part 4 Episode 126
Sacrificial giving can be scary, so how can we give generously without succumbing to fear? In this episode of Light + Truth, John Piper looks to the wonderful promises of Luke 12:13–34 to answer that pivotal question.
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By Ray Rhodes — 2 years ago
On January 31, 1892, Charles Haddon Spurgeon (1834–1892) died in Menton, France, with his wife, Susie, at his bedside. His death was the deepest valley of Susie’s many years of suffering. While Charles’s body was transported back to London for a week of memorial services, Susie retreated to the estate of Thomas Hanbury, just across the Italian border and only a few miles from Menton, her grief and her physical affliction barring her from returning home immediately. There, as the blue waters of the Mediterranean kissed the Italian shoreline, Susie contemplated her future without Charles:
When the storms come, and our trees of delight are bare and leafless, when He strips us of the comforts to which His love has accustomed us — or more painful still, — when He leaves us alone in the world, to mourn the absence of the chief desire of our heart; — to sing to Him then, to bless and praise and laud His dear name then, this is the work of His free grace only. (The Sword and the Trowel, December 1903, 606)
For decades, Susie had borne the anxiety of Charles’s trials as well as the weight of her own poor health. Though youthful curls still donned her face, wrinkles betrayed the challenges of her life. Staring at the sea from the portico of the majestic Hanbury mansion a thousand miles from home, Susie determined to continue Charles’s gospel-centered ministry.
Susie reflected back to 1875. The first volume of Charles’s book Lectures to My Students was about to be published, and Susie expressed a great desire for every pastor in England to receive a copy. Far from dismissing her idea, Charles encouraged her to act on her godly desire. And so began “Mrs. Spurgeon’s Book Fund.”
Now, seventeen years later, overlooking the Italian coast, Susie decided that the Book Fund would remain her first priority of ministry. This was no small commitment, for she would oversee every aspect of the Fund, and by the time she died in 1903, Susie had given over 200,000 books to 25,000 pastors — gifts that encouraged them, strengthened their churches, and promoted the gospel across the land.
While being the largest of Susie’s ministry endeavors, the Book Fund was only one among many ministries for the widow. In the mid-1890s, she helped plant Beulah Baptist Church at Bexhill-on-Sea. She also authored several books herself and even served as coeditor and major contributor to the four-volume C.H. Spurgeon’s Autobiography. All of this work grew from Susie’s commitment to labor for the glory of God, the good of many, and the promotion of her husband’s legacy. During their engagement, she had vowed never to hinder the preacher in his ministry, and though she was now aging, afflicted, and alone, she wouldn’t abandon the task.
Susie Meets Charles
Susannah (Susie) Thompson was born January 15, 1832, in London, the only daughter of Robert and Susannah Thompson. A London girl with big city ways, she made several trips to Paris during her youth in order to learn French. Her family attended New Park Street Chapel, where James Smith pastored (1842–1850), his evangelistic ministry provoking a desire in Susie for salvation and baptism. The desire was realized in 1852, when the 20-year-old Susie was converted. Due in part to her personality and in part to various cultural factors, however, she concealed her faith for a time.
In April of 1854, after the youthful Charles had arrived to serve as pastor of New Park Street Chapel, he learned of Susie’s spiritual struggles and gifted her his favorite book, John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress, in order to assist her spiritual growth. This outreach by Charles pried open Susie’s shy heart. Charles counseled her to engage her faith in diligent Christian service, and his message stuck. At the same time, love blossomed between the two, and they were engaged in August of 1854. Susie was baptized by Charles in early 1855, and they were married on January 8, 1856. Twin sons followed, but shortly after their birth, the first major trial of the young couple’s marriage confronted them.
The Spurgeons’ Suffering
Charles and Susie honeymooned in Paris and enjoyed a full cultural experience, from art galleries to cathedrals. Susie spoke French fluently, but Charles not at all. He delighted in his new bride serving as his interpreter. After returning to London, they moved into their first residence together, a place that Susie called “Love Land” (Autobiography, 2:180). Her description of their first home is apt, for Charles and Susie enjoyed a delightful marriage of 36 years: affectionate and happily romantic. But woven into the fabric of their marriage were also seasons of dark suffering, separation, and sadness.
Music Hall Disaster
Charles was extremely busy the first year of their marriage: caring for a growing congregation, leading auxiliary ministries connected to the church, answering mounds of correspondence, and preaching across the British Isles, along with editing and writing. The Surrey Gardens Music Hall disaster on October 19, 1856, illustrates both the heights of Charles’s fame and the depths of his sorrows. Charles was but 22 years old when upwards of ten thousand people crowded the hall to hear him preach, with thousands more gathered outside. Early in the service, a contingency of mischief-makers yelled “Fire!” though there was no fire. Panic ensued, and in the rush to exit the building, seven people were trampled to death, and thirty more were badly injured. Spurgeon was inconsolable, and the future of his ministry seemed in doubt.
When Susie received the news at home, she hit her knees in prayer for the many sufferers and for her despondent husband. Though Spurgeon resumed his ministry a couple of weeks later, he was permanently scarred emotionally. Susie was an anchor in this storm as they looked to Christ together.
Charles’s physical nemesis was gout. Later, kidney disease was added, and both were coupled with seasons of depression aggravated by memories of the disaster at the Music Hall.
For Susie’s part, in mid-1868 her church attendance began to wane, and from then until 1892, she rarely attended worship services due to physical ailments. In early 1869, she was operated on by the acclaimed gynecologist James Simpson, and though she was helped somewhat by the surgery, she nevertheless continued to suffer for the rest of her days.
Several controversies erupted throughout Charles’s ministry, but the one that most troubled him was known as the Down-Grade Controversy of 1887. At the heart of this controversy was what Charles saw as the undermining of fundamental biblical doctrines by some men in the Baptist Union. The disagreement led Charles to resign from the Union. Though not engaged directly in the controversy, Susie contended for the truth by increasing her Book Fund efforts, encouraging pastors to read doctrinally sound books. In her own way, she pushed back against the tide of theological liberalism alongside her husband. Susie believed that this controversy, with its corresponding loss of friendships, tragically accelerated Spurgeon’s death.
Humble, Steadfast Faith
Charles’s death in 1892 grieved but did not paralyze Susie. Throughout her life, Susie was motivated by Charles’s early words to her when she was facing doubts. “Active service brings with it warmth, and this tends to remove doubting, for our works thus become evidence of our calling and election” (Letters of Charles Haddon Spurgeon, 54). Charles’s words motivated Susie then and for all of her days. Yet it wasn’t only personal resolve that kept her going.
Proclaiming the true power behind her labor, Susie writes, “I look unto the Lord with humble, steadfast gaze, and receive courage and strength to press onward and upward in the path he has marked out for me!” (Free Grace and Dying Love, 101–2). This statement didn’t come cheaply, either, as if it were merely the product of an emotional moment. For Susie, Bible reading year after year and cover to cover, along with prayer and regular reading of the best soul-nourishing devotional writings of the day, cultivated a deep and abiding Christ-centeredness.
Susie’s story contains bountiful evidence of her faith in Christ and sacrificial service for his kingdom. Her son Charles wrote of her “labor for the Lord” even when “the mind was weary, and the body exceedingly weak” (The Sword and the Trowel, December 1903, 607). At her death, Susie’s other son, Thomas, wrote of how his mother’s life might speak to future generations:
Methinks she would press upon us, even more earnestly and sweetly than before, the preciousness of the Word, and our duty to hide it in our hearts. She would bid us prize and plead the promises. She would charge us to cling to the Cross and to cleave to that which is good. She would implore the unsaved at once to trust the finished work of Jesus. (The Sword and the Trowel, December 1903, 608)
Susie’s great-great-granddaughter, Susie Spurgeon Cochrane, writes, “When there were good times, she gave Him the praise, and when there were trials, she fell on her knees before Him, Again and again she went to the Fountain of Living Water and drank deeply from it. Then, and only then, was she able to do all that she did in her life” (Susie: The Life and Legacy of Susannah Spurgeon, 256).
The Bitter Is Sweet
Susie was the wife of the world’s most famous pastor, an author of books, a lover of the poor, a church-plant helper, and a devoted mother and grandmother. Though pressed in the vice of affliction and grief, Susie was determined to live with Christ as her life and the joy of others as her mission (Philippians 1:21–26).
On the tomb where Susie is buried beside Charles are inscribed the words of a hymn — words descriptive of her devotion to Jesus and hope for the future.
Since all that I meet shall work for my good,The bitter is sweet, the medicine is food.Though painful at present, wilt cease before long,And then, O! how pleasant, the conqueror’s song.
By John Piper — 2 years ago
How do we shepherd small children through the pains of life? The question comes to us from a mom in Baltimore named Taylor. She writes, “Hello, Pastor John! My husband and I have been deeply encouraged and greatly challenged by this podcast and through all the Desiring God resources. Thank you! I just started your new book, Providence, and it is stirring my heart with great affection toward our God. Thank you for helping to align my emotions through your writing with the reality that is ours. This past fall, my husband was in a serious car accident. He walked away from it with just a concussion, but our car was totaled. When we shared this with our 3-year-old, in an age-appropriate way, he was greatly affected by this, even angered. We tried to explain how God had allowed this and protected Daddy through his providence, but he had two responses: asking when God will ‘make Daddy dead,’ and showing anger toward God and wanting to ‘beat him up.’ How would you explain suffering in light of God’s providence to a toddler, and help him to love God more for it?”
There are two principles that need to be taken into account when choosing what to say about God to a particular audience or child. One principle is whether they are open and mature enough to understand the truth. The other principle is whether we have spoken the truth clearly and boldly enough so that a real judgment can be formed about it.
Is Our Audience Ready?
Two passages of Scripture relate to that first principle. Jesus said, “Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you” (Matthew 7:6). I’m not saying you should think of your 3-year-old as a dog or a pig — although his responses were the kind of responses Jesus had in mind when he gave that principle: “I’m gonna beat God up.”
Rather, the point is that there are audiences or children that are so spring-loaded to reject the truth that Jesus warns us not to bring reproach on the truth by having it trampled under their feet. Your 3-year-old may show himself to have such an attitude toward God’s providence that you should measure your teaching by what he can hear. You don’t substitute falsehood for truth; you simply decide how much and when you can share.
Now the other passage is 1 Corinthians 3:1–3:
I, brothers, could not address you as spiritual people, but as people of the flesh, as infants in Christ. I fed you with milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for it. And even now you are not yet ready, for you are still of the flesh. For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh and behaving only in a human way?
Here the problem is not with swinishness but immaturity: “I . . . could not address you as spiritual people, but . . . as infants.” That’s the first principle: Is the audience or the person, the child, open enough, mature enough to receive the particular truth you’re talking about?
Have We Spoken Clearly?
Here’s the second principle — namely, whether we have spoken the doctrine clearly and boldly enough, so that the people have a real sense of its truth and worth and beauty. Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4:2,
We have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God.
An “open statement of the truth” — that’s what’s needed for a clear grasp of the doctrine, and a sense that it is good and wise and just and beautiful. You can see how this is almost the exact opposite of the first principle. In that case, we might say too much, and in the second case, we might say too little, or hedge the truth a bit.
Now what I have in mind in this second case, this second principle, is perhaps being so cautious, or so hesitating, or so qualifying in our talk about God’s sovereignty, that a child may pick up, in the way things are explained, or the tone of voice, that Mom and Dad are not exactly excited or joyful about God’s providence.
The child may hear, in the explanation, a kind of permission not to like this doctrine. A lot of people talk that way about God. They are so ready to excuse anger at God that they talk about his sovereignty as though it actually invites anger. I think anger at God is always wrong — always. If you feel it, of course, you should say it. But to feel anger at God is sinful. So I don’t think our tone of voice or the way we talk about God’s providence should sound like it invites disapproval.
I don’t know which of these two principles — say less, say more — should govern these parents right at this moment with this child. But I’m very surprised that a 3-year-old feels free to talk about beating God up. It surely sounds like God has been presented to him in a way that God is too small, too humanlike. But I’m not there, and I can’t say with any certainty.
Four Ways to Teach Providence
What about the last part of the question: How would you explain God’s providence to a toddler and help him to love God more for his providence? Here are four suggestions.
1. Illustrate God’s merciful providence.
First, tell him stories that illustrate how bad things are often God’s wise and merciful way of doing good to us. For example, I know several stories where a serious injury happened to a person, and it was the way the doctors found the cancer in the lacerated leg, which then enabled the doctors to start therapy that saved the person’s life. Then you can teach the child: “That’s always true. That’s always true when bad things happen to God’s children. He always does good through them, even if we can’t see it.”
“Bad things are often God’s wise and merciful way of doing good to us.”
Another example is this: When you go to the doctor, he pokes at you; or when you go to the dentist, he drills on you; or a doctor cuts you to have surgery to save your life. He hurts you to save you. The doctor’s always doing that for our good. So you tell those stories to children to build in the truth so that they can grasp that bad things, hurtful things, painful things are not unloving things from God. They can get that very early.
2. Explain that suffering is normal.
Second suggestion: weave into your teaching, again and again, the passages that say suffering is necessary for Christians and designed by God. Teach a child that suffering is normal, not exceptional, for Christians.
Matthew 5:12; 24:9
James 1:2, 12
1 Peter 1:6; 4:12
And on and on and on. Saturate your kids with this doctrine.
3. Remove any sense of entitlement from God.
Third, and related to that second suggestion: teach your child that we are sinners and that we don’t deserve anything good from God. The surprising thing in a world of rebels like us is not pain; the surprising thing is pleasure. God is super, overly abundantly good to his creation, giving us better than we deserve every day — all the time, better than we deserve.
“The surprising thing in a world of rebels like us is not pain; the surprising thing is pleasure.”
In fact, everybody gets better than they deserve once you understand the nature of sin. God is never unjust in the suffering of this world — never. We don’t deserve better than we get, ever; we always deserve worse than we get. Every good thing is grace, grace, grace. Teach a child grace as undeserved favor. Strip a child of all sense of entitlement before God.
4. Look always to the cross.
Finally, point the child over and over again to the cross of Christ — where the worst suffering happened in the world — and explain how the death of his Son was planned by God (Acts 4:27; Isaiah 53:4–10). This is where the child will see how bad his own sin is, because when he asks, “Mommy, Daddy, why would God do that to his own Son?” the answer is that Mommy’s and Daddy’s sin, and your sin, is that bad, and takes that much suffering and love from God.
I think if those four suggestions are followed, children will be more able to submit to God’s providence and feel thankful for everything that God turns for good.
By Scott Hubbard — 8 months ago
I sometimes think I could be very holy if, after doing my morning devotions, I just stayed in my room all day long. I find that patience, for example, comes easier by myself. Peace, too. I feel a general kindness and goodwill when I’m alone. I imagine myself ready to bear others’ burdens.
But then I leave my room and begin interacting with some of those “others” face to face. And before long, I wonder where my holiness went. Patience now feels fragile; peace goes on the retreat. My theoretical kindness finds itself unprepared for real annoyances, and my shoulders seem too weak for real burdens. People, it turns out, have an irritating way of poking the spiritual fruit on my table, only to reveal just how many of those apples and pears are plastic.
I might prefer holiness to be a more private affair, a halo that hangs over my solitary head. But “holiness,” John Stott helpfully reminds me, “is not a mystical condition experienced in relation to God but in isolation from human beings. You cannot be good in a vacuum, but only in the real world of people” (Message of Ephesians, 184). True holiness may begin between God and the soul, but it finds full expression in community with other people — other wonderful, glorious, frustrating, and sometimes offensive people.
“True holiness may begin between God and the soul, but it finds full expression in community with other people.”
Which explains why, again and again, the New Testament describes the authentically holy life using two simple words: “one another.”
Around fifty times in the New Testament, Jesus and the apostles tell us to feel, say, or do something to “one another.” We are to care for one another and bear with one another, honor one another and sing to one another, do good to one another and forgive one another. And then there is the grand, overarching, most-repeated one-another, the command that “binds everything together in perfect harmony” (Colossians 3:14): “Love one another.”
The one-anothers do not exhaust our obligations to other Christians (many communal imperatives do not include the phrase “one another”), but together they offer a brilliant picture of life together under the lordship of Christ — and not only under the lordship of Christ, but also in the pattern of Christ. For, rightly grasped, the one-anothers are nothing less than the life of Christ at work in the people of Christ to glory of Christ.
Consider, for example, how even in a community-oriented passage like Colossians 3:12–17 (which includes three one-anothers), Paul can’t stop talking about Jesus. Our new character — compassionate, kind, humble, meek, patient (verse 12) — reflects “the image of its creator,” Christ (verse 10). We forgive “as the Lord has forgiven [us]” (verse 13). Our unity reflects “the peace of Christ” (verse 15); our words flow from “the word of Christ” (verse 16). In fact, whatever we do in community, we do “in the name of the Lord Jesus” (verse 17). For here, “Christ is all, and in all” (verse 11).
The one-anothers, then, are earthly dramas of heavenly realities; they are the love of Christ played out on ten thousand stages. So, with this pattern in mind, we might fruitfully consider the one-anothers in five categories: have his mind, offer his welcome, speak his words, show his love, and give his grace.
1. Have His Mind
Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count [one another] more significant than yourselves. (Philippians 2:3)
Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another. (1 Peter 5:5)
We might easily launch into the one-anothers wondering about all we should do for our brothers and sisters in Christ — and indeed, the one-anothers call us to do much. But before we say or do anything for one another, God calls us to feel something toward one another. “Have this mind among yourselves,” he says, “which is yours in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). And this mind, or attitude, can be captured in one word: humility.
It is possible — frighteningly possible, I’ve discovered — to externally “obey” the one-anothers with a mind utterly at odds with Christ. It’s possible to greet one another with a smile that hides bitterness; and encourage one another with a grasping, flattering heart; and bear one another’s burdens with a messiah complex. In other words, it is possible to turn the one-anothers into subtle servants of Master Self.
Humility, however, clothes us with the others-oriented attitude of Christ. Humility puts a pair of eyeglasses on the soul, allowing us to see others without the blurring of selfishness. And humility, in its own miniature way, follows the same descent Christ took when he “humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death” (Philippians 2:8). It goes low to lift others high — and doesn’t scheme for how it might lift self too.
In a Spirit-filled community, we all (no matter how tall) look up at each other, not down; we jostle to kneel and hold the towel; we choose the seat of the last and the least — because we remember how Jesus did the same for us.
2. Offer His Welcome
Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. (Romans 12:16)
Welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you. (Romans 15:7)
Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. (1 Peter 4:9)
The one-anothers, having begun with a humble mind, now move outward to eyes, mouth, and outstretched hand. The “mind of Christ” led our high and holy Lord toward us, not away. He came to us with a welcome, drawing us near through the door of his humble heart. His was a fellowship-creating love, a love that turned strangers into brothers (Ephesians 2:14–17). And now we, his people, walk in that same love and offer that same welcome.
“Welcome one another” (Romans 15:7), like all the one-anothers, sounds nice in theory. But the real-life application of this command may stretch our preferences and personalities beyond the breaking point. For “welcome,” of course, means more than “nod and say hello,” and “one another” means more than “those others whom you like.” Rather, the command calls us to warmly embrace, gladly associate with, and readily invite into our homes every other in our church — including those who seem “lowly” (Romans 12:16), and those we feel strongly tempted to judge or despise (Romans 14:3).
But if Christ left heaven to welcome sinners like us, then we can cross the church foyer to welcome difficult saints. And if he opened his heart to let us strangers in, then we can open our homes to others, no matter how strange. And if he greeted us in our lostness, then surely we can greet others in their loneliness.
3. Speak His Words
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom. (Colossians 3:16)
Encourage one another and build one another up. (1 Thessalonians 5:11)
Exhort one another every day. (Hebrews 3:13)
Christians are a word people, a speaking people. Brought to life ourselves by “the living and abiding word of God” (1 Peter 1:23), we now seek to bring that life to others through our Word-shaped words. And we employ the whole range of our tones and vocal cords to do so: we not only speak, but teach, instruct, admonish, encourage, exhort, comfort, honor, stir up, and even sing. Whether pastors or not, we all are stewards of God’s life-giving word; we all have something to say.
So, as we welcome one another, we look for opportunities to take some portion of God’s word and apply it in a way that “fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear” (Ephesians 4:29). We are people with a Bible always open on the table of our hearts, ready to “stir up one another to love and good works” with a well-timed word (Hebrews 10:24). So, even as we laugh and exchange small talk, a current of holy intentionality flows through our conversation: we know that God intends to use what we say to work wonders in each other’s lives.
Which means, of course, that we are also a listening people. For, first, as Dietrich Bonhoeffer writes, we can speak “the Word of God” faithfully and accurately only when we listen “with the ears of God” (Life Together, 76) — patiently and attentively tracing the contours of a brother’s or sister’s heart. And then, second, we also listen to the words that others have for us. No one in any local church, including its pastors, is only teacher, but always teacher and disciple, speaker and listener, exhorter and exhorted.
4. Show His Love
Always seek to do good to one another. (1 Thessalonians 5:15)
As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another. (1 Peter 4:10)
Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. (Galatians 6:2)
As important as words are for a healthy Christian community, no community lives on words alone. Jesus did not just speak to people during his earthly ministry; he healed them and touched them and delivered them and ate with them. And so we, his disciples, are not mere mouths to one another, but also hands and feet and shoulders. We not only speak his love, but show it.
Now, service may often feel like a costlier form of love than speech. It’s one thing to speak comforting words; it’s another to sit for long hours as a comforting presence. It’s one thing to encourage someone carrying a heavy burden; it’s another to bend your shoulder to the load. This kind of love interrupts the day’s plans with untimely requests and lays hands on evenings and weekends.
“Let . . . the greatest account it their greatest honour to perform the meanest necessary service to the meanest of saints,” John Owen writes (Works, 13:81). In the one-another kingdom of Christ, pastors count it their high honor to visit shut-in saints. Busy fathers set up chairs before the Sunday gathering. Tired mothers listen over children’s background chaos to the quiet tears of a younger woman. College students give their Saturdays to helping church members move houses.
And all of us, like the woman in Mark 14, gladly break our precious alabaster flasks — our time, our gifts, our money, our homes — to anoint the body of Christ.
5. Give His Grace
[Bear] with one another in love. (Ephesians 4:2)
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:32)
The humble mind of Christ, the warm welcome of Christ, the stirring words of Christ, the helpful hand of Christ — these show, marvelously, what the Spirit of Christ can do in a community. But none displays our Lord quite so clearly as the forgiving heart of Christ. Christian communities are built, through great disappointment and heartache, in the shape of a cross.
Therefore, we never have a better opportunity to show the glory of Christian community than when Christian community feels hardest. Get close enough to any group of recovering sinners, and they will poke and prod your patience. They will say things that baffle and offend you. They will wound you without even knowing it. The worst of these moments can leave a smoking crater in our souls. But they can also become ground zero for something beautiful and new: “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32).
This love will hurt. Oh will it hurt. To forgive completely — not counting others’ sins against them, not holding onto it, not allowing it to become the lens through which we see them? This love feels, in some small measure, like Calvary love. And it shines with Calvary splendor.
One Another for the World
Why, we might ask, did Paul, Peter, James, and John lay such stress on Christian community? Why did they stack up so many one-another commands in their letters, rather than promoting a more private piety?
Perhaps for the same reason Jesus said to his disciples,
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another. (John 13:34–35)
“This Lord reconciles us not only to himself, but to each other, creating one-another love out of one-another pain.”
We live in a world with its own set of one-anothers: one-another brokenness, one-another enmity, one-another manipulation, one-another selfishness. And local churches exist to show a different way of life — a different Lord of life. This Lord reconciles us not only to himself, but to each other, creating one-another love out of one-another pain.
As such communities move out into the world — into parks and coffee shops and sports teams and neighborhoods — and as they invite outsiders in, such relational glory will not go unnoticed. “By this all people will know . . .” And therefore, Christians walking in the one-anothers not only have Christ’s mind, offer his welcome, speak his words, show his love, and give his grace. They also advance his mission.