Forgive my blatant plagiarism of John Chrysostom yet again but I am finding myself so motivated and inspired by his words in recent weeks that I want to keep sharing excerpts.
John was a Christian in the late-300s which means he is living after the events of 312 and 325 when Christianity was made legal and then ultimately embraced as the religion of the Roman Empire. Christianity had gone from a marginalized and persecuted religion to the most powerful group and this resulted in a lot of nominal Christianity, folks joining just to be part of the “in crowd” so greed and excess quickly infested the Church. John became a preacher and towards the end of his life a bishop and reacted against the hypocrisy of rich Roman Christians. After his death, he gained the nickname “golden mouth” (chrysostom in Greek) and that name is forever attached to him, and for obvious reason.
Nothing is more frigid than a Christian who is indifferent to the salvation of others. Indeed I wonder if such a person can be a true Christian. To become a disciple of Christ; is to obey his law of love; and obedience to the law brings joy beyond measure and description. Love means to want the best for others, sharing with the joy of love. So the Christian feels compelled to speak to others about the law of love, and are the joy of obeying this law. Of course, many people are shy about speaking to others; in their case actions motivated by love will be most eloquent testimony. But those who are not shy will surely want to express their joy at every opportunity. There is no need to use fine words or elegant phrases; even the most uneducated people can convey joyful love by the spirit which accompanies their words. Even slaves have been known to convey their masters and mistresses by the sincerity of their speech.
The bit about nothing is more frigid than a Christian who is indifferent – convicts me.
The part about being too shy speech but acts motivated by being enough to share the gospel – comforts me.
May Jesus warm our cold hearts to care about those around us and may the Spirit of God embolden us to speak when necessary, serve when unnecessary and love always. Praise God above.