Every relationship—from home to the congregation, work, school, or society—is full of sinners sinning. You ask yourself why there is so much chaos, disorder, hatred, envy, greed, slander, libel, philandering, home-wrecking, and worse. You think that if there are more rules, more laws, more policies, and more enforcement of other people’s rebellion that everything will get better. But you neglect to listen to what God has spoken and where He has directed that Word. Yes, He reveals the lies of the deceiver and the temptations of the world. But Jesus tells you those are nothing compared to your own heart. A reconciled relationship begins with and requires reconciliation between you and God.
For you to be a disciple like those of the Scriptures, therefore, is to live daily under the influence of the Word of Jesus. Your heart and mind consciously want to do just that and seek every opportunity to be with Jesus in preaching, teaching, and Sacrament. Jesus himself said to the disciples who had chosen to follow him, "If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (John 8:31ff). To be a disciple is to have your priorities adjusted so that work, play, and even family are governed by and focused on hearing Jesus and receiving His gifts.
God the Father, working through the Word of Jesus and by the power of the Holy Spirit, will make, accomplish, and do in you what is needful. And by repenting you, forgiving your sin, and amending your heart, the world around you will begin to change. The good measure given to you will overflow in the same kind for those around you. As you are forgiven by God, you forgive those who sin against you. As you are shown mercy by God, so mercy will overflow for those near you. As God removes the plank from your eye, you will compassionately and in love be given to assist your neighbor with the speck in theirs.