Restore With Love

Bible Reading: Colossians 3:12-14

Author: Sra. Narda Vargas (Dominican Republic)
Thursday 10 January 2019 © The Upper Room.
I recently read an article about a tribe in northern Natal in South Africa.  According to tribal custom, when someone does something wrong or detrimental to others, the members of the tribe take the offender to the center of the village and surround him or her.  During two days, the tribe members tell the offender the good things he or she has accomplished.   The purpose of the ritual is to restore the person and to affirm that he or she is essentially a good person.

I think that too often our tendency is to treat others unkindly, especially when they have made a mistake.  We make sure to remindthem continuously of their errors.  Even in raising our children, we tend to emphasize the negative rather than the positive.

However, the Bible teaches love.  In Matthew 22:39, Jesus says, “Love your neighbor as yourself.”  Galatians 6:1 reminds us, “if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently.”  Let us treat others the way we want to be treated.  In doing so, we’ll follow the example of Jesus, who loves us, even though we do not merit it.
Prayer: Loving God, we confess that we are not perfect.  Forgive us and teach us to follow your example of mercy.  Amen.

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