Say “Hi” for me

Date: Friday, February 28

ScriptureRomans 16:1-24

Verse: Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the churches of Christ greet you. (Romans 16:16)

“With a friend we don’t have to say or do something special. With a friend we can be still and know that God is there with both of us.” ― Henri J.M. Nouwen

Do you have holy friendships? That sounds goofy, I know, but I’m struggling to find another word. What I mean is, do you have people in your life who, when you get together, you feel something spiritual going on? Maybe you sense Christ in your conversations. Maybe you are able to “get” one another in ways that aren’t like anything you’ve experienced before. Or maybe you can’t exactly put your finger on it, but you know this is something beyond a normal connection. Do you have a holy friendship, one that transcends the people involved?

Sometimes I have thought some of the books of the Bible would have benefited from some editing. When reading those “begat” sections in the Old Testament, or this passage of Romans, I have wondered why some scribe copying the text didn’t just skip those parts. They are obviously written for a specific time and place. Why preserve them? We don’t know who Epaenetus, we can’t even pronounce his name. What does it matter to us that Paul wants to say “hi” to him?

This list of “hi”s has something to tell us about the connections we can foster, something about friendships not based solely upon our affection for one another, but from our mutual affection for Christ. For when we draw closer to Christ two things happen. One, we learn more about ourselves, and two, we are drawn closer to one another. The reciprocal is also true. When we learn about ourselves, or work toward deeper connection with one another, we are given a window into which we can be drawn closer to God. Too often, though, we have privatized our faith. We have been taught too well that religion (along with politics) is a topic not to be discussed in polite company. We need to open our relationships up to Christ, allowing the holy to enter in.

Prayer: Teach me, Lord Jesus, to let my friendships be an expression of my love of you. Amen.

Action: Find ways to allow Christ into your relationships.

Respond: Describe a holy friendship. Give an example. Answer by clicking “Leave a Comment” below.
If you are receiving this via email, click the title at the top of the email to take you to the devotion webpage where you can leave a comment.

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About Joe Iovino

Christian, husband & father, Associate Pastor in Monument CO, guitar player, motorcyclist, Mets fan.
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