The Narrow Way: Community

Galatians 6:1-6

The pursuit of holiness is not a purely personal quest: the road is one on which we travel as a group. And the most sensitive indicator of our spirituality is the nature of our relationships with our Christian brothers and sisters…

What then should be our attitude towards another member of our congregation who falls ‘out of step’? (verse 1) We are not to stand aloof, doing nothing, on the assumption that it is ‘none of our business’; still less are we to gossip about them or criticise them behind their backs. It is in fact our Christian duty to rebuke and correct our fellow believers when necessary (Matthew 18:15). But this must be done gently and tactfully, not arrogantly! “How can you say to your brother, ’Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye?“ (Luke 6:42) We must recognise that we are just as weak and susceptible to temptation as everyone else; we are all sinners who are utterly dependent on God’s grace.

This is just one example of the caring concern that we should show towards all our Christian brothers and sisters. We all have burdens – sins, misfortunes, worries and doubts – and we aren’t meant to carry them alone. When we see others struggling, we are not to add to their burden by loading them with guilt or criticism, but assist them by encouragement, prayer, and simple companionship. And hopefully they will do the same for us…

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