2 Corinthians 8 16 - 24

This passage brings home to the reader that Paul worked with other fully committed believers as a team. One of the things which I find heartening is that, maybe, when I visit someone in their home for the first time, I ask for another believer to accompany me and that person then forms their own separate attachment with that person. I'm all for the 'spider's web' sense of community where the person who is going through some sort of life crisis has a variety of people to call upon. My niece, whose husband died recently before he reached forty, has a three year old daughter and she happily calls on the neighbours to help out if she finds it is too much and she needs to go out for a walk or such like. I would encourage you to call upon people if you are struggling. That is to say, don't tell every single person you meet of your issues, but think about who will be reliable and is eager to help.

There are all sorts of personality types in the world today and this would have been the same in the first century world. There are leaders such as Paul and there are second-in-commands such as Titus and Barnabas. There are also those who love to serve in whatever capacity they are called and there is that bright shiny example of Aristarchus, the man who chose to become Paul's slave, so that he could accompany him to Rome.

Another thing to note in this passage that the same Paul who could write like a lyrical poet and think like a theologian, could also act with the meticulous accuracy of a chartered accountant. He was a big enough man to do the little things and the practical things supremely well.

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