Do you feel like part of the family? Come talk to a mentor.
“I’m praying not only for them but also for those who will believe in me because of them and their witness about me. The goal is for all of them to become one heart and mind—just as you, Father, are in me and I in you, so they might be one heart and mind with us. Then the world might believe that you, in fact, sent me”. (John 17:20-21, The Message)
It was a simple conversation in a crowded room with a man from another country. We had met only once before, almost a year earlier. I knew a few details of his Christian experience; he knew none of mine. As we stood surrounded by people, he prefaced his remarks with one word: Sister.
In his culture it is common and comfortable to address a Christian with the term “brother” or “sister.” It also happens in some other cultures when Christians gather. But to me that evening, the word took on the brilliance of neon. I am his sister. He is my brother. We are connected to each other and to the Father. The family tie is unbreakable.
This powerful connective moment has happened before in my life and always with a person from another culture. It is as though God wants to strike me with the importance of plural pronouns in His Kingdom. “Don’t you (all) know that you (all) are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in the midst of you (all)?” (1 Corinthians 3:16)
While we are individually accountable to respond to God’s invitations, once we are in the family, we are one unit. Jesus’ prayer for us just before His arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane almost aches with His desire that we relate as brothers and sisters, that we work out in daily experience what Christ accomplished in reality. The Apostle Paul put it plainly: “There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28)
When Jesus’ disciples asked for a lesson on prayer, it is significant that Jesus began with “OUR Father…” “Our” is a personal pronoun that packs a Kingdom punch.
Question: Do you feel like you are part of God’s family? If you don’t, ask the Lord to guide you to good church, small group or new friends.