Not pleasing Himself but Building up of others
Romans 15:1-7

What ways has Christ accepted you? Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God” (vs. 7)

Read Romans 15:1-7 before reading on.

NextGen encourages an atmosphere that enables values like hospitality, mutual vulnerability and leadership , missions , sharing of weaknesses, the one another’s, and you,YOU, of course. This is centered around the Word, and prayer, among others, to flourish so that God can be praised among the nations.

Comments made during last April 2020 virtual NextGen Conf. describes some of the attributes of God’s welcome.

Note these:
Connecting, being loved, understood, heard, belonging, intimacy, transparency, the one another’s, refreshing and restoring to soul, worship, missional, etc…

Romans 15 speaks powerfully to my heart for these NextGen values.

So, as I read verses 1-7, I ask myself, what ways have I received the “Welcome of Christ?” As I better understand receiving this welcome, I can then offer such welcome to others and therein God is glorified. Because, as I accept others God will be gloried! I want to love and accept others as Christ has accepted me.

Put it another way, verse 7 says my acceptance of others is first to be understood by Christ ‘s acceptance of me and you. This has profound implications for living out the way of Jesus.

NextGen’s desire is for the delegates to know first of all to remember the welcome and delight of God’s love for their souls. To bring their pains, hurts, joy’s and dreams, and place them on the table set before them. There in a safe place we find His encouragement and renewed perseverance as we meet together with one another in community. (refer to vs. 4-5).

Romans 15:1, also says the strong are to bear with the failings of the weak.

Romans 15:3. Christ did not come to please Himself but as it is written “the reproaches of those who reproached you fell on me”. If we are strong it is only because of Christ. II Cor.12:10 says when we are weak He is strong.  We can bear with one another’s burdens (Gal.6:9) and celebrate His joys and peace as we continue to trust Him allowing the God of hope to overflow by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)

NextGen is only a piece of what God wants to do way beyond the NextGen community in our lives.  Through coming together, we want to, with one voice,  give praise and Glory to God. (vs. 6)

May we first tend to our own soul. Then I encourage you to practice your takeaways, find Christ‘s delight, welcome, and/ or acceptance in your life. Making the one another’s available along the path of life:  you, peers, mentors, and those to equip.

Then out of that overflow we can help build up others in the Lord, so that God himself helps us live in harmony with each other, as fitting for followers of Christ. (vs. 5)

May we as a NextGen Community be committed to seeking the God of the Word and receiving the welcome of Christ. (vs. 4,7) The God of patience, encouragement, hope and much more, who does not please Himself but who took our reproach on Himself. We then can join together with one voice giving praise and Glory to him to the nations.

May the ripple effect be so Lord…..May your soul create welcome spaces to receive Jesus’ invitation

What ways have you felt Christ’s welcome or need to feel it? Stop. Sit in His presence and read Romans 15 today and see what He has to say to your soul. The very Word He gives you may be something someone else might need to hear too. But may it be from an overflow of His joy, peace, and hope by the power of the Holy Spirit from the God of hope, patience and encouragement in praise and glory back to Him out to your soul and then to others.

Sterling and her husband Jim are the founders of NextGen Leaders and the NextGen Leaders Conference. Sterling is a certified Coach and mentor. You can find out more about her services at