Tool 16: The One Anothers: Investing in Relationships

In my (Ken’s) book Conformed to His Image, I list out the following exhortations (33 positive and 7 negative for a total of 40), with the following explanation:

In this world, we are part of a community of pilgrims who are traveling toward God, and we are meant to assist, nurture, and encourage one another along the way. Commitment to a local community of faith enhances personal growth by providing a corporate context for identity, involvement, and ministry. This commitment to mutual nurture and service is most clearly expressed in the New Testament reciprocal “one another” commands.[1]

The Exercise:

Read through this list and flag the commands that stick out to you. Which one (or two, or a few) do you need to work on in order to recalibrate your relationships? Consider posting those on your wall or bathroom mirror, or putting them into an alert/reminder on your phone. Whenever you see them, pray for God’s help in following through on His command.

Example: If you struggle with being critical of other people, especially in your speech, put Romans 14:19 (“Pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding”) and James 4:11 (“Do not speak against one another”) somewhere where you’ll see these two commands a few times a day—maybe in a place where you tend to find yourself making critical comments.

Positive Exhortations

  • Wash one another’s feet (John 13:14).
  • Love one another (John 13:34).
  • Be devoted to one another in brotherly love (Romans 12:10a).
  • Give preference to one another in honor (Romans 12:10b).
  • Be of the same mind toward one another (Romans 12:16; 15:5).
  • Build up one another (Romans 14:19).
  • Accept one another (Romans 15:7).
  • Admonish one another (Romans 15:14).
  • Greet one another (Romans 16:16; 1 Corinthians 16:20).
  • Wait for one another (1 Corinthians 11:33).
  • Have the same care for one another (1 Corinthians 12:25).
  • Through love serve one another (Galatians 5:13).
  • Bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2).
  • Show tolerance for one another (Ephesians 4:2).
  • Be kind to one another (Ephesians 4:32a).
  • Forgive one another (Ephesians 4:32b).
  • Speak to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs (Ephesians 5:19).
  • Be subject to one another (Ephesians 5:21).
  • Regard one another as more important than yourselves (Philippians 2:3).
  • Teach and admonish one another (Colossians 3:16).
  • Comfort one another (1 Thessalonians 4:18).
  • Encourage one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11a; Hebrews 3:13).
  • Build up one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11b).
  • Live in peace with one another (1 Thessalonians 5:13).
  • Seek after that which is good for one another (1 Thessalonians 5:15).
  • Stimulate one another to love and good deeds (Hebrews 10:24).
  • Confess your sins to one another (James 5:16a).
  • Pray for one another (James 5:16b).
  • Keep fervent in your love for one another (1 Peter 4:8).
  • Be hospitable to one another (1 Peter 4:9).
  • Use your gifts to serve one another (1 Peter 4:10).
  • Clothe yourselves with humility toward one another (1 Peter 5:5).

Negative Exhortations

  • Do not judge one another (Romans 14:13).
  • Do not bite and devour one another (Galatians 5:15).
  • Do not become boastful, challenging one another (Galatians 5:26a).
  • Do not envy one another (Galatians 5:26b).
  • Do not lie to one another (Colossians 3:9).
  • Do not speak against one another (James 4:11).
  • Do not complain against one another (James 5:9).

[1] Kenneth Boa, Conformed to His Image: Biblical, Practical Approaches to Spiritual Formation, rev. ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Academic, 2020), 457–458.


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Recalibrate Your Life: Navigating Transitions with Purpose and Hope

Times of transition, especially in midlife or later life, are ideal moments for recalibrating our priorities and habits. Gain practical tools and the eternal perspective needed to evaluate your God-given gifts, skills, wisdom, resources, and opportunities in order to life meaningfully now and for the rest of your earthly sojourn.

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