21 Tychicus, the dear brother and faithful servant in the Lord, will tell you everything, so that you also may know how I am and what I am doing.22 I am sending him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are, and that he may encourage you.
23 Peace to the brothers and sisters, and love with faith from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 24 Grace to all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with an undying love.
In Paul’s greetings and salutations he expresses much personal information. In this particular salutation, he does not say much that is personal, and because of this we get a more general example of hello’s and good byes. The more general, the easier it is for us to apply!
What do we see in this salutation that can help us to minister to others more effectively?
Why do churches get involved in ministries to people that they do not know? Why should we care? What is the motivation?
- Serve One Another
Dear brother, faithful servant in the Lord. Sent by Paul for ministry to encourage.
- Partners in ministry
Think of ways to bless others in service to what is important to them.
Love other’s children.
Love other’s work.
Speak well of others in your community.
Brag on the character of others.
Let God be the God of others who are different from you!
Listen to me. It is not hard to find where other people are wrong. I mean, they are not exactly like us, so they must be wrong! This is such a hurtful way to view life. And I mean hurtful to us! I want everyone in this room to be doing better than I am. I want everyone in our community to be doing better than I am. Why? Because it means that I am gonna do better!!
- Partners in encouragement
Spend time and money to demonstrate that other people are important to you. Don’t be weird.
Use the spiritual gifts that you have to build others up. Do not tear down because of personal insecurity.
If you need to rebuke or correct someone else, make sure that your relationship gives you permission to do so. And make sure that you have conveyed love to the other person in a way that they understand it.
And be patient. Just because you have a word of instruction does not mean that you have the appropriate time. If you are not praying for that person then keep your mouth shut.
- Partners in life
Make abundant life for others your goal. If you really want others to do well, they will know it.
Phil 2:3-5. What are we to do? And why? We all know how to look out for our own best interests. Really what that means is that we are trying to keep the suffering elements of life at bay. We want to avoid all difficulties. But, in the process of that we find that we may cause difficulties for others.
Avoid competition, even when others do not, and seek to be a blessing. I want you to have abundant life. I hope you understand that here today. My main spiritual gifts are encouragement and helps. I am wired to want you to do well. It makes me happy to see people doing well. The Holy Spirit in me affirms that this is the way that I want to be. But my gifts are not your gifts and they are not more important than yours either.
Responsibility and freedom are connected to each other. If you cannot manage your responsibilities, you lose your freedom. Also, if you will not take responsibility for your life and this means your weaknesses, then others cannot help you! If you don’t take responsibility for yourself, then we cannot be partners!
- Bless One Another
- Speak blessings over others
We are all connected. God gives us influence in the lives of others. If you speak something to someone that is not true, then you can introduce a powerful force of confusion or fear etc. So, if you speak the truth, then you speak to help connect others to God and His life!
Lots of Old Testament examples.
22 The Lord said to Moses, 23 “Tell Aaron and his sons, ‘This is how you are to bless the Israelites. Say to them:
24 “‘“The Lord bless you and keep you; (This is general)
25 the Lord make his face shine on you (This is an example)
and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace.”’
27 “So they will put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.”
Strange to our culture. But in what way is this hurtful?
I Peter 4: 10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ.
- Speak words of peace
Does God want peace with you? How is it attainable?
Jesus’ death has taken those who were far off and has brought them near. But we will never know the life that God has for us until we walk in obedience to His direction for life.
This means we will not always take the easy path. Peace comes at a cost of effort, sacrifice and time. It always has and always will.
- Speak words of love
Begin by affirming the value of others! Jesus died for you. God affirmed this interest of Him in you by sending Christ to live as an example, therefore we should pay attention to Christ as a light shining in a dark room! You are loved by God! You are worthy of my life as well. I love God and love what He loves.
Does that mean that I love everything about you? No. I don’t have to love your behavior for you to be very important to me. Children help me with this immensely!
- Speak words of faith
Encourage others to know how important faith is in their lives. We are all trusting in something! 666= the number of ??? MAN. Forever there is the idea of trusting in the cooperative efforts/power of men or God. Both would seek to influence you.
- Speak words of grace
Your life is a reflection of this ministry of the Apostle Paul. He is “our Apostle”. We are gentiles. Most people are. And so, as Paul speaks words of grace, they filter down through time to others who speak to others. You have that same power. It is founded upon your good character. If you love and serve others you will be personally powerful. You will be able to minister life in the power of the Holy Spirit.