“For I rejoiced greatly, when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.”3 John 1:3-4
My mom and dad each have a lot of siblings and in turn, I have many cousins. I always looked forward to the family reunions as it was a chance to see all of my cousins and hang out with them. I was on the younger end of the cousins, the fact of which irked me as a boy, but I sure don’t mind now. I have a close relationship with some, and others I am only cordial with due to age, distance, or varied interests. Several years ago, I got a call from one of my cousins who is older than me, whom I did not know very well at the time.
My cousin was at a crossroads and struggling spiritually and emotionally. She was in a bad situation, but she was determined to follow God and make some drastic changes in her life. The one conversation led to many more, and we soon began to draw close. She started to faithfully attend my church and our Sunday School class. We developed a close bond and I saw my cousin start to grow spiritually as God helped her work through the problems she was facing in her life. I was praising God for what He was doing in her and she was a great encouragement to me. Some time later, I moved to another church and we no longer worshipped together so our conversations became less frequent.
My cousin recently contacted me, and she is still following God and being a light to those around her. She is concerned about others in her family and personally growing in the Lord. My heart was full of joy as I heard her talk and speak about the greatness of our God and what He is doing in her life. Tears of joy ran down my cheeks as I rejoiced with my cousin at the goodness of God and what He is able to do in our lives. My cousin is an encouragement to me and she holds a special place in my heart. We are often quick to spread bad news, but we should instead be quick to spread the good news of what God is doing in our lives and in the lives of others.
Are you one who is quick to spread bad news or are you one who is an encourager and lifts up others? Whom has God placed on your heart that you need to disciple? Do you envy others who are growing in the Lord or is your heart full of joy for them? May we always rejoice when we hear and see people walking in truth, and may we seek to lead others to that truth.
Stay in the Fight!