1:6 They have testified to your love before the church. You will do well to send them on their way in a manner worthy of God. 1:7 For they have gone forth on behalf of “The Name,” accepting nothing from the pagans. 1:8 Therefore we ought to support such people, so that we become coworkers in cooperation with the truth. 3 John 1:6-8
I was watching some of the stars coming out to raise as much money as possible for the efforts in Haiti. But I was reminded through a friend Malik Aziz that there are many people without a ‘name’ who are doing just as much if not more. Their names we may never know, yet by their efforts some people’s lives will be saved and others might be set on a path they would have never found.
Gaius’ gets his name in the bible as an example of someone who is faithful. And the ones he helped spoke to about His character. All of them really are not doing anything for their own reputation though. It is ‘The Name’ that leads them to speak, to travel, to open their doors to strangers, to avoid compromise. John instructs him (in what in Greek is titled a mitigated circumstance; a subtle command of sorts) ‘that we (you too) should support such people.’ I think Minister Miguel Warren explained it best in that he instructed his sons as he was departing (if I recall correctly) that they, “MIGHT want to get these dishes cleaned before I get back.” It is a suggestion…but there is clearly a consequence.
For Miguel’s sons there is one consequence. For Gaius the consequence is different. By helping in the manner he could, Gaius finds that he no longer is observing a principle of truth, he is a PARTAKER of truth. It is no longer a concept he observes. It is a character he obeys. He has become a dispenser of hospitality, the same hospitality God has certainly displayed to Him. When we become partakers of truth, we learn that its really not about us; not about my name; something more important is going on.
I’d like to believe that some people who had the privilege of going to Haiti (South Africa, Kenya, Arapho, St. Louis, 27th and Prospect, your neighbor, the next bedroom…) thinking ‘it’s not about me’ found out just how much it really is not. I can imagine getting off a plane on a worn out tarmac and seeing the distruction and chaos would leave you feeling raw. I’d like think that the sobering reality of seeing circumstances beyond what a group of people could fix would be humbling. We should support such moments for ourselves and others for in these moments we find a humility and a hospitality that is not our own.