What does it mean to be invited into partnership with Jesus? I meditated on that during moments of wakefulness overnight. My finite mind can only compare this with what I know about human partnerships. Am I even able to comprehend what it means to partner with Jesus?

In human partnerships, I assume there is some semblance of equality; equality in what is brought into the relationship. This might be equal resources or time devoted to the success of an endeavor. Perhaps one partner brings resources, another brings a greater commitment of time. Of this I am sure, there is no equality in my partnership with Jesus.

He invites me, equips me, provides the resources and ingenuity. I am a grateful recipient of the gift of the Holy Spirit who guides me and teaches me along the way. This overwhelming opportunity, according to scripture, results in generosity toward others and a willingness to live with open hands.

42All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship {koinonia}, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer.

Acts 2:42

3For I can testify that they gave not only what they could afford, but far more. And they did it of their own free will. 4They begged us again and again for the privilege of sharing {koinonia} in the gift for the believers in Jerusalem.

2 Corinthians 8:3-4

6And I am praying that you will put into action the generosity {koinonia} that comes from your faith as you understand and experience all the good things we have in Christ.

Philemon 1:6

This is my prayer for myself and you, my readers, today. May we understand our partnership with Jesus so clearly that it changes the way we live, think, act, feel and respond. May we live with generous, open hearts and hands coming from a faith that understands and experiences all the good things we have in Christ.

One final thought . . . this generosity is material resources, of course. But it is more than that. In Paul’s letter to Philemon, he asked him to generously forgive Onesimus. Onesimus was Philemon’s slave and he ran away. Encountering Paul along the way, Onesimus received the gift of salvation through Jesus. Paul sends him back to Philemon with this letter, asking Philemon to accept Onesimus as a brother in Christ. Generosity in forgiveness.

Generosity of material resources is easy. Partnership with Jesus requires the harder sacrifice of generosity of forgiveness — receiving those we would rather overlook.

Just a thought . . .

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