What wonderful, tender words the writer uses to address the recipient of this letter. They set the stage to express one’s love and worry about those who are identified as precious to the writer. And then the letter continues with straightforward and simple words of serious advice and somber warnings.
I have used the same method in addressing my children when I have been worried that they are not making good choices. I have wanted to make sure they really hear what I am saying. First, I have let them know how very much I love them and care about their well-being. And then I have tried to give clear and simple counsel without shutting them off.
And that is still the message God has for us as we struggle with choices and decisions, doubt and uncertainty. We are from God. We are beloved of God. Beloved children of our heavenly Father. This knowledge of God’s acceptence is a good place in start whatever it is we have to face.
Loving God, you are the spirit of truth. Guide us as a loving parents give guidance for their children, always nudging us toward everything that is right and good. Amen. — ES