A brother involved in a new church ministry writes that his parishioners are “older and nice,” although they don’t verbally respond much to his teaching. This minister friend has been teaching in Romans, and wonders how much of it is sinking into his congregation’s minds. A church elder, who has missed several classes due to illness, keeps reminding him that “we must do our part to stay saved.”
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Let me encourage you not to miss the opportunity (if it comes along) to connect with this older brother and others like him at a heart-level which will enrich both of you forever. Perhaps you can visit him while he is sick or recovering, and pray together. Or stop by for a visit and ask him about old times, or entice him to share what Jesus really means to him, or inquire what he has learned about life. I have had some special experiences like that over the years and I will always cherish the memories they bequeathed me.
People seem to be able to “hear” a person better whom they know and with whom they relate at a heart-level. Not relating as a means to an end, but as a worthy achievement within itself. Such “connection” of hearts has amazing repercussions. Somehow, grace seems to be better demonstrated than explained. Grace often grasps the heart first, and after that the head. It is easy to debate with an argument. It is more difficult to argue with kind words and deeds.
I suspect that you know these things already, but it might be encouraging for you to hear someone say them again. You have a beautiful spirit and a gentle heart. Allow what God places in you to flow out to the brothers and sisters in your church one-on-one, heart to heart. You will never be sorry. And in times to come, these folks will remember and love and defend you — whether they fully understood and agreed with your teaching intellectually or not.