How are you doing today? Feeling a bit lost? My life has been upended these last few weeks, and I am rather discombobulated myself. With all of the construction work wanted by our buyers, our home sweet home has turned into a place of disorder, disaster, and dust. My nerves are shot, and my disposition isn’t quite as sunny. So when I read this passage, it grabbed my attention.
“Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion. Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, ‘Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord. Therefore, ‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.’ Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” ~ Romans 12:9-21
Wow. Paul gives us clear concise instructions how we as Christians should live our lives. What a beautiful, right way to live! And I don’t know about you, but I have seriously blown it this week. Sigh.
While this seems like the perfect, righteous way to conduct ourselves – and it is! – we cannot do this all on our own. It is a daily battle against our fleshly desires and selfishness and against Satan himself. We must armor up (Ephesians 6), seek first the kingdom of God (Matthew 6:33), die to self (Mark 10:21), and let the Holy Spirit work through us.
” ‘But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.’ ” ~ John 14:26
“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” ~ Romans 15:13
“These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual.” ~ 1 Corinthians 2:13
So another day begins, and my prayer is that I will bless and not curse, be “patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer”, and “not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good”. Help me, Jesus!
“I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” ~ Philippians 3:14