In August 2010, four young adults participated a mission trip to Romania to work at a summer camp as part of Lehigh Presbytery’s ongoing partnership with the Hungarian Reformed Church in Romania. Read all of their entries.
Sightseeing in Romania
Stay in Tibor’s Village for the Night
So then, putting away falsehood, let all of us speak the truth to our neighbors, for we are members of one another. ~ Ephesians 4:25 (NRSV)
It is very easy to believe that we have all the right answers. It is very easy to be in a situation and think that those around us are oblivious of what ought to be done. It is very easy to use our own experiences and instincts as benchmarks as how others should live. It is very easy to act in that way around people different from us, but is that the truth as God has revealed it through Jesus Christ?
Paul has just finished admonishing the church for succumbing to the ways of the world. He proclaims this sort of lifestyle as one of darkness that leaves one alienated from the life of God. It leaves us open to greed and impurity of many kinds.
This is not the way you learned from Christ! …You were taught… to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to clothe your selves with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
~ Ephesians 4:21; 22; 23-24
Going to a different culture can leave one a bit dazed. Feelings of comfort with the ways we are accustomed to can be easily overwhelmed by immersion in another culture. Yet we are not that different from believers around the world. We all affirm allegiance to the same heavenly Father. We all place our trust in Jesus Christ. We all rely on the Holy Spirit to be with us and to lead us on the path of discipleship. We all read the same scriptures, even if they be in different languages. And that is the way Paul pursued his ministry, putting away the falsehood of the truth of his own making and instead daring to speak the truth of the true gospel to all, to neighbors whom he met along his journeys.
Might we all learn to cling to that truth in our daily walks wherever they lead us and might we welcome the fellowship of all believers, who bear witness to the one truth.
Heavenly Father, amidst peoples of different languages; different cultures; different practices, may we find unity in your truth, a truth revealed to us through Jesus Christ in whose name we gratefully and humbly pray. Amen.
Rev. Bob MacIntyre
Olivet United Presbyterian Church, Easton