16 Jan 2022

Dear beloved family in Christ

One of the greatest joys as a disciple of Jesus is to belong to the koinonia community of believers in the Body of Christ.

Jesus commanded his disciples to love one another. As we do so obediently, it will bear a powerful testimony to a watching world. “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:35). This is our family trademark, as explained in this devotional article by Revd Bill Crowder, a Bible teacher with Our Daily Bread Ministries.

The Aran Islands, off the west coast of Ireland, are known for their beautiful sweaters. Patterns are woven into the fabric using sheep’s wool to craft the garments. Many of them relate to the culture and folklore of these small islands, but some are more personal. Each family on the islands has its own trademark pattern, which is so distinctive that if a fisherman were to drown, it is said that he could be identified simply by examining his sweater for the family trademark.

In John’s first letter, the apostle describes things that are to be trademarks of those who are members of God’s family. In 1 John 3:1, John affirms that we are indeed part of God’s family by saying, “Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!” He then describes the trademarks of those who are the children of God, including, “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God” (1 John 4:7).

Because “love is of God,” the chief way to reflect the heart of the Father is by displaying the love that characterizes Him. May we allow His love to reach out to others through us — for love is one of our family trademarks.  (Revd Bill Crowder, ODB Ministries)

May our community at St John’s Chapel be marked joyfully by our Christlike love for one another.

We love because He first loved us.”   1 John 4:19

Pastor John

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