Galatians 4:8-20

Galatians 4:8-20

Galatians 4:8-20 - Paul's Concern For The Galatians
Taken in isolation, we might be forgiven for thinking that Paul is being a bit heavy-handed or bossy with his choice of words in these verses. But lets not forget that verses 8-20, sit within the middle of a letter written to a group of people who Paul has invested huge amounts of time, love and energy into. He’s not just firing shots here, or attempting to burn any bridges – he loves these men and women deeply and the Holy Spirit has laid a real sense of concern on Paul’s heart for the situation that they currently find themselves in.

These are words written to a people, by a man who has carried them in his heart previously, and continues to do so at the time of writing as well. The reason is, that when we encounter the genuine love that God has for us, it cannot be contained – it starts influencing and shaping the way we show love for the people around us to. It’s an incredibly solid foundation upon which relationships are formed. Paul’s motivation in writing to these people and attempting to highlight some of the mistaken or damaging ways they’re practising their faith, isn’t to reassert his position or bring them down. He is desperate for them to flourish in their discipleship to Jesus.

That is a marker of real friendship and real love.

We can care about all kinds of things that effect the lives of those around us: how their work is going, are they healthy, what are they enjoying at the moment. All wonderful details that shape our concern for others. But the deepest, truest marker of care and concern for someone, is whether they’re relationship with Jesus is in a good place or not. That trumps all other enquiries or considerations.  

We live in a world that prioritises other things and values many other aspects of life, above the relationship we have with a holy and perfect God. But relationships with Jesus at the centre are stronger & healthier than those where He isn’t central. And holding Him as the top priority in all our interactions with others is the greatest display of friendship we could display.

Friends, a relationship with Jesus is your most treasured possession. It’s true for you and it’s true for those around you, whether they know it or not. There will be people around you this week who God has placed there for you to demonstrate this too – by your words and your actions. Are you going to be bold enough to speak the truth in love, or will you leave it for someone else or some other time?

Apply

  1. Who do you have in life at the moment who you could be really investing in and caring for, outside of immediate family? (not an abstract name – someone who you can really identify). How might you better devote yourself to that person in the coming days/weeks??

  2. Who do you have in life at the moment who is shaping you, and helping your character/faith to develop? (not an abstract name – someone who you can really identify). How might you better open up to them in the coming days/weeks?

  3. Pray and ask God to highlight someone to you today. Send them a quick message saying you’re thinking of them and praying for them today.

Prayer


Father, I thank you that you love me and your care for me is constant. Thank you that I can know this because of Jesus lived a perfect life, in my place and died for my sins on the cross – meaning that the pathway for me is clear again this week. That I can boldly approach you as a result, knowing that you won’t turn me away, but welcome me with open, loving arms. Help me to show this love to those around me throughout this week.

Amen.

Memory Verse

'The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.' - Psalm 145:8-9

This Everyday Devotions was written by Adam Bream, who is part of our leadership team.

Adam unpacks these themes in more detail in his sermon message this week on our website, YouTube Channel and at our Online Church Services.

This Everyday Devotions has also inspired a devotional video that you can watch on our YouTube Channel.