2 John 4 It has given me great joy to find some of your children walking in the truth, just as the Father commanded us. 5 And now, dear lady, I am not writing you a new command but one we have had from the beginning. I ask that we love one another. 6 And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.
Notice that John is very excited that “some” (not all) are walking in the truth. It seems like there are very few times when everyone is in agreement about everything. Because we all have different opinions and value systems, peace is sometimes an effort, rather than an easy “flow” of relationships. John knows that, but he challenges God’s people over-and-over to walk in love and walk in obedience to God. When we obey God, we follow His path… and His path leads us all in the same direction. When we are filled with His love, we overflow with His love as we walk that path. If you got it, y’gotta share it.
As we love each other and the love overflows, it also spills on those around us who don’t know Jesus yet. So, when someone walks into our lives or our church, the supernatural thing that happens is that we love them. They aren’t necessarily like us and they may be a bit nervous about coming into a new group, but that love relieves the fear and helps them to feel wanted and valued. That’s something that is missing in our society as-a-whole, but should be evident in God’s church.
This message will be very affirming in that Riverside Church is one of the most welcoming and newcomer-aware churches I have ever attended. You love each other, you love new people, and you love God enough to follow His direction. Be prepared to be encouraged and challenged to be the kind of fellowship of God’s people that others are looking for.