God’s ‘community’ has brotherly affection

Every week the farragutpress is published it includes a Community section.

For just a few minutes, let’s consider this notion of community. In general, we define a community as a population of different individuals living in a defined area.

However, a real community goes beyond this – it is a people infused with purpose, linked by common characteristics; a group who comes together and works to enhance the value of life.

We see this beautifully expressed in the Word of God.

Romans Chapter 12 helps us to appreciate the essence of community with the words of the apostle Paul in verse 10, when he wrote, “Love one another with brotherly affection.”

So, what does that mean?

The apostle continues with the characteristics of those who express “brotherly affection” in verses 15 through 18, when he writes:

“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.”

To bring all of these characteristics together requires an element of trust, which is the oxygen to the life of “community.”

Let me finish with a quote from John Gardner, who was the Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare under President Lyndon B. Johnson. Gardner wrote: “Communities are the ground-level generators and preservers of values and ethical systems.”

Let each one of us express “brotherly affection” as we generate and preserve values and ethics in our communities that foster trust in one another.