Romans 16 is full of greetings. When I read the names listed, there is a description that follows along. I read things like:
A benefactor of many people … they risked their lives for me … the church meets at their house … my dear friend … worked very hard for you … whose fidelity to Christ stood the test … in the household who are in the Lord … women who work hard in the Lord … our brothers and sisters …
This list causes me to slow and remember … the family whose broken English first introduced me to the Lord … the third-grade friend who told me about salvation … a sister who told me sins could be forgiven … a bold woman who wasted no time in bringing me to church … the people I’ve served alongside … the ones who’ve shown up and walked alongside here for years.
My heart warms at the Christian community.
I’m doing an Advent study (good grief, I’m already one day behind!) called “Light and Life to All He Brings” published through Well-Watered Women. It’s a study through 1 John. Its dissection of light, darkness, love, children of God, the world, and more completely takes hold of me. So when I read in Romans today, I take heed.
17 I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. 18 For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people. 19 Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I rejoice because of you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil.
20 The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.
The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.Romans 16:17-20, NIV, emphasis mine
Grace and peace be with you.
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