God Uses People to Care for People
God’s Definition of Caring – Part I
Scripture Reading: Philippians 2:1-11
Key Verse: 1 Peter 5:2a NLT
Care for the flock that God has entrusted to you…
The sentiment of the title for this month’s devotional, “God Uses People to Care for People”, is not profound nor surprising for most Christ-followers. However, the detail that the Bible gives us in “how” to care for people might be a little challenging.
Our Key Verse for today is for church elders, which for the Church of the Nazarene refers to pastors. The Apostle Peter tells elders to care for the “flock” that God has entrusted to them.
The New Testament is also clear that believers are to care for other believers. It is also true that the Bible reminds us to care for unbelievers, but with lesser priority:
Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. (Galatians 6:10)
The word “especially” gives priority to the family of believers.
The conclusion of all this is simply that God wants to use both pastors and laypeople to care for other believers.
I want to call to your attention to a couple of verses in today’s Scripture Reading:
Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. (Philippians 2:3)
Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. (Philippians 2:4)
Look for the detail on “caring for people” in these passages. “Don’t be selfish” is the first detail in caring for other people.
For me, I often do not see my own selfishness, so I ask the Holy Spirit to open my eyes to my deficiency. After I see it, then I must decide to get rid of that selfishness by serving others without so much concern about my time, my energy, or my money.
The second detail in this passage is “don’t try to impress others”.
If I am going to care for others as God wants me to, I must deal with my ego. Again, I ask the Holy Spirit for help to see if I am caring for others simply because I want to look good. Do I really love and care for people, or do I want others to see me as a loving person?
Repenting of this “vain conceit” and seeking God’s love for people is the only way to care for people as God wants.
Father, help me to see any selfishness or vain conceit that is in me. May I care for others with a sincere and selfless love. In Jesus’s Name I pray, amen.