July 11, 2019                                                                                     

Colossians 1:1-8 …“Just as (the word) is bearing fruit and growing in the whole world, so it has been bearing fruit among yourselves from the day you heard it and truly comprehended the grace of God.” vs.  6b 

The number of believers grew quickly in those early Spirit-filled years. Paul hadn’t gone to Colossae but Epaphras had, and the results were stunning. We don’t know much about this Epaphras fellow, but he evidently had a good grasp of the gospel. His word, the word of truth, had been received and was bearing fruit. There was something magical about the process. As people heard the good news of Jesus their lives changed and the light of the Christ began to shine in them. Love abounded and it was visible and real. Sometimes those of us who have grown up in denominational Christianity miss that excitement. We know the words but we’ve heard them so often that they’ve become commonplace. The gospel becomes old news and we miss the power it has to change lives. Sometimes people even quit going to worship—they find it boring and stale. But then comes the day when, perhaps in the context of a new faith community, they hear the gospel again as though for the first time. They see Jesus with new eyes and grace overwhelms their hearts. In those moments the Colossae experience is repeated and the fruit of the Spirit abounds. The light of Christ shines and joy is restored.

Thought for the Day: What does it mean to meet Jesus again for the first time?