April 28, 2009 

No Place for Islands
by Charles R. Swindoll

Romans 15:1-7

Nobody is a whole chain. Each one is a link. But take away one link and the chain is broken.
Nobody is a whole team. Each one is a player. But take away one player and the game is forfeited.
Nobody is a whole orchestra. Each one is a musician. But take away one musician and the symphony is incomplete.
Nobody is a whole play. Each one is an actor. But take away one actor and the performance suffers.
Nobody is a whole hospital. Each one is a part of the staff. But take away one person and it isn't long before the patient can tell.

Cars are composed of numerous parts. Each one is connected to and dependent upon the other. Even if a tiny screw comes loose and falls out of the carburetor, it can bring the whole vehicle to a stop.

You guessed it. We need each other. You need someone and someone needs you. Isolated islands we're not. To make this thing called life work, we gotta lean and support. And relate and respond. And give and take. And confess and forgive. And reach out and embrace. And release and rely.

Especially in God's family . . . where working together is Plan A for survival. And since we're so different (thanks to the way God built us), love and acceptance are not optional luxuries. Neither is tolerance. Or understanding. Or patience. You know all those things you need from others when your humanity crowds out your divinity.

In other words:

Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. When God's people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality. (Romans 12:10-13 NLT)

Why? Because each one of us is worth it. Even when we don't act like it or feel like it or deserve it.

Since none of us is a whole, independent, self-sufficient, supercapable, all-powerful hotshot, let's quit acting like we are. Life's lonely enough without our playing that silly role.

The game's over. Let's link up.

 

Excerpted from Come Before Winter and Share My Hope, Copyright 1985, 1994 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide. Used by permission.

 

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