Scripture: Romans 15:7-13
Observation: Paul urges us to accept one another and reminds us that through Jesus, God made it possible for the Jews and Gentiles to come together to glorify God. He finishes with a prayer for the people, asking that they will be filled with joy, peace, and power because of their trust in the Lord.
Application: Do you ever have words that stick with you forever? Years ago, I had a friend who wrote me a note and at the very end, she wrote, “Thank you for being you.”
Thank you for being you.
Ever since I received those words years ago, I’ve savored them and saved them. So often, people will say, “thank you for being _______” and “thank you for doing _______.” While those specific thank you’s are often heartfelt and genuine, how much better is it to hear “thank you for being you”? For me, it’s the highest compliment and honor, a way of saying, “Thank you for being who you are. I’m thankful for all parts of you, not just these specific ones. I’m thankful for your strengths and your weaknesses and every part in between.”
It’s what Paul says here in verse 7:
“Therefore, accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory.”
Accept each other – all parts of each other. What makes us who we are isn’t just our strengths or what we do well. What make us who we are is our strengths, our weaknesses, our struggles, and our successes, all tied together in a story punctuated by the saving grace and power of Jesus Christ who created us.
Let’s accept each other today. Let’s accept the entire story of someone else’s life, not just the chapter that highlights their successes or the part where they serve us well. Let’s accept the whole story – the part where they let us down, the part where they fell short, the part where they failed.
Because here’s the truth: we’ve all let people down. We’ve all fallen short. We’ve all failed. But, Christ Jesus accepts us anyways. It’s time we accept others the way He accepts us. This week, look someone in the eye this week and tell them “thank you for being you.” It’s a powerful form of acceptance.
Prayer: God, I pray you’ll help me accept others with the grace that you accept me. I pray I’ll see their value and worth the way you see them. Thank you for making me, creating me, and accepting me. Amen.