Hi everyone, it’s Mick here and welcome to Friday’s Podcast – today we complete our reflection in John’s letters and indeed our series for this year. We began our Podcasts last September observing the birth of the church in Acts and its life through the letters to these early churches. We begin our new Podcast series in September but during these summer weeks we have our Podcast ReBoot with some top picks from various speakers of these past 12 months. Our reading today is 3 John1:9-14 and our focus is ‘goodness’ – verse 11 says
Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God.
This is my last Podcast as church leader at STC so two things to begin with; first, thank you for being an STC Podcaster! If it’s a blessing to you do tell others. Secondly, a big hello to our grandchildren this morning – to Josiah and Anabelle, Abigail and Nathaniel, Ivy and Flora – we love you all and your mummies and daddies! You are our motivation every day to make Jesus and his Better Life known to you as you grow up.
If you are a Christian you are one of the ‘goodness’ people!
The Christian life is one of invitation and challenge it’s a truth we use often here at STC. Invitation; what is God saying to me? Challenge; what am I going to do about it?
Jesus invites us to be with him, to walk with him, to receive from him all the blessings of heaven. However, he then always offers us a challenge – to go and be a blessing to others. The Christian faith is a give away faith! Someone once said that the Church is the only organisation that exists primarily for those outside the organisation. We are called each day to live a Jesus life, to copy him. So what did Jesus do that we can copy? He taught people, healed people, blessed people, accepted people, loved people, forgave people – that’s big stuff, how can I possibly do that? If you, like me feel a little daunted by this, be encouraged because here is something we can all do as we follow Jesus, it’s right at the heart of who he is – (Acts 10:38) ‘Jesus went around doing good’; so, we are called to copy him and go about our day ‘doing good’. Read our focus verse today from The Message
Model the good. The person who does good does God’s work. (v11 MSG)
A question? Do you get fed up reading about bad stuff in our world? Wars, disputes, Brexit, egomaniac world leaders who dominate social media, growing tensions with China, the scourge of racism and now a Global pandemic! Do you get fed up all this? I do. We need to see some ‘goodness’ in our world don’t we -it’s there, but it never seems to impact our news does it? However, over these past few months of lockdown we have seen ‘goodness’ which inspires us; hero health-workers, anonymous benefactors, a generous government and a small glimpse of what a caring and compassionate society could be like. Who knows, we might get used to it and want more of this way of life, this way of goodness breaking through. The last few months have shown us that tolerance, civility, respect and goodness are possible.Wherever goodness is happening, Jesus is a work in that place because he went around ‘doing good’.
The true mark of a disciple of Jesus is how much we give away of the blessings he pours into our lives. Someone once said this, as I share God’s goodness with others he just shovels more goodness into my life – the truth is that God’s shovel is always bigger than mine! Here is a truth; God is with you right now, he is ready to shovel goodness into your life right now – his invitation to receive his power, his heavenly blessing and strength – then his challenge, be ready to give it away and bless others as we go around, as he did ‘doing good’. This is how we grow in our faith, we receive and then give it away – not some of it but all of it. Remember, God’s shovel is way bigger than ours!
We began these Podcasts several years ago, thank you for being part of this journey; thank you to all the team who work hard to bring their reflections to you every week to Becca, Duncan and others who offer amazing worship and to Ruth who makes sure it all gets online every day for us! The aim of these Podcasts, as I said at the beginning is to make the bible, prayer and worship available every day to our church family and others that you may grow closer to Jesus and discover his Godly Purpose for your life; confidence, truth, love, faithfulness, goodness … then throw in some kindness, hospitality, generosity and fun – it’s how we are meant to live! I love the worship song for this week:
‘I will build my life upon your love,
it is a firm foundation.
I will put my trust in you alone
and I will not be shaken.’
Lord, thank you that every day you invite me into your presence to be loved and blessed and encouraged. Show me how I can be a blessing to others today, to ‘do good’ through simple acts of kindness and generosity and to be a witness to your love and your goodness and so fulfill my Godly Purpose.
God bless this amazing church family today and every day. Amen
BIBLE READING: 3 John 1:9-14 (NIV)
I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to be first, will not welcome us. So when I come, I will call attention to what he is doing, spreading malicious nonsense about us. Not satisfied with that, he even refuses to welcome other believers. He also stops those who want to do so and puts them out of the church.
Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God. Demetrius is well spoken of by everyone—and even by the truth itself. We also speak well of him, and you know that our testimony is true.
I have much to write you, but I do not want to do so with pen and ink. I hope to see you soon, and we will talk face to face.
Peace to you. The friends here send their greetings. Greet the friends there by name.