Romans 12:10 - "Be devoted to one another..."

The Greek word for “devotion” is philostorgos, which means “to cherish one’s kindred, to be fond of, to be fraternal toward others, tenderly loving, and tenderly affectionate.” Devotion implies a deep level of commitment. It is, perhaps, the only One Another which we can, in some measure, ration out.

Through the years, I have developed a deep sense of devotion to certain individuals, but not to everyone. For instance, my highest devotion is to my wife and children. Even among my friends, I am more devoted to some than others.

The Lord also had those to whom he was deeply devoted: the twelve disciples. Among the twelve, there were three men in whom he confided the most – Peter, James, and John. Some would suggest that he was closest to John. He didn’t love the three men more than the others, but he did spend more time with them, allowing them to know him in ways the others didn’t. The three men were invited to be with Christ on the Mount of Transfiguration, perhaps the highlight of his earthly ministry, and in the Garden of Gethsemane, arguably the lowest point in his life. Jesus didn’t have favorites, but he did have intimates. 

There are many ways to practically express devotion, but let me leave you now with five suggestions:
1) Value - "I highly value you; you are important to me."
2) Commitment - "I am committed to you; I pledge to be lovingly involved in your life."
3) Priority - "My life, like yours, is multifaceted. However, you are a priority to me."
4) Faithfulness - "Relationally, I'm going to bind myself to you. I hope my deep commitment will make you feel secure."
5) Tenderness - "You are very dear to me."

Photo Credit: "Men of War"
Out of the furnaces of war come many true stories of sacrificial friendship. One such story tells of two friends in World War I who were inseparable. They enlisted together, trained together, were shipped overseas together, and fought side by side in the trenches. During an attack, one of the men was critically wounded in a field filled with barbed-wire obstacles and he was unable to crawl back to his foxhole. The entire area was under a withering enemy crossfire and it was suicidal to try to reach him. Yet his friend decided to try. Before he could get out of his own trench, his sergeant yanked him back and ordered him not to go. “It’s too late. You can’t do him any good, and you’ll only get yourself killed.”

A few minutes later, the officer turned his back, and instantly the man was gone after his friend. A few minutes later, he staggered back, mortally wounded, with his friend, now dead, in his arms. The sergeant was both angry and deeply moved. “What a waste,” he blurted out. “He’s dead, and you’re dying. It just wasn’t worth it.”

With almost his last breath, the dying man replied, “Oh, yes, it was, Sarge. When I got to him, the only thing he said was, ‘I knew you’d come, Jim!’” 

Written by Don McMinn, Ph.D. ( — May 26, 2013

Visit us on Facebook Visit us on Blogspot
Love One Another - Don McMinn BookShout