Now, With Profit

Read

“Now, With Profit” by Kirk Hunt

 

I beseech thee for my son Onesimus, whom I have begotten in my bonds: Which in time past was to thee unprofitable, but now profitable to thee and to me: (Philemon 1:10-11 KJV)

Philemon 1:10–11 KJV

The relationship between Onesimus and Philemon clearly had problems. Onesimus was an escaped slave and a thief. Onesimus had a lot of nerve, walking back in Philemon’s door.

 

Still, the two men came back into each other’s lives. Apostle Paul insisted that the two men reconcile with each other. Paul must have sensed that there would be profit in their relationship.

 

Onesimus returned to his owner, prepared to answer on two felony charges. Philemon suddenly had to re-prove his reputation regarding generosity and compassion to Christians.

 

The call to profitable relationships is not always easy. The call is rarely with risks. Still, the call rings out, today.

 

You have a choice. You can leave the relationship the way it is, or you can re-build. You can write off the loss, or you can go for the profit.

 

God is always honored when His sons and daughters work it out. No one said that is easy. But he is honored.

 

Think: The call to profitable relationships is not always easy, but it is worthy.

Pray: “Lord, help me to live in grace with others, especially believers.”

Copyright © October 2011, Kirk Hunt

Philemon’s Dilemma

Read


For we have great joy and consolation in thy love, because the bowels of the saints are refreshed by thee, brother.

Philemon 1:7 (KJV)


I expect that Philemon saw Onesimus before reading Paul’s letter. Whether measured in seconds, or hours, it would seem like an eternity to the men in the room. Would Philemon react against an escaped slave, or respond to a Christian brother?


The Epistle put Philemon on the horns of a dilemma. Would he live up to his (Roman) world-wide reputation as a generous, compassionate Christian? Could Philemon still do the right thing, facing the man who robbed him twice?


Circumstances can, and do, demand proof of our Christianity. Do you truly forgive? Are you authentic about reconciliation with a brother or sister?


Intellectual exercises in forgiveness are easy. Concrete episodes of reconciliation are rarely neat and simple. The facts, figures and emotions flood us in excruciating detail.


“Are you or aren’t you?” “Do you walk the talk?” “Do you or don’t you?” The questions may be undiplomatic, but the answers are critical.


Sooner, or later, someone or something will test your character as a Christian. Has it been all talk, or are you really a man or woman of God? What’s your answer to your personal Onesimus?


Think: Choose to be the Christian you talk about.


Pray: “Father-God, help me respond Your way, no matter the circumstances.”



Copyright © December 2010, Kirk Hunt