“Let the inner movement of your heart always be to love one another, and never play the role of an actor wearing a mask. Despise evil and embrace everything that is good and virtuous. Be devoted to tenderly loving your fellow believers as members of one family. Try to outdo yourselves in respect and honor of one another. Be enthusiastic to serve the Lord, keeping your passion toward him boiling hot! Radiate with the glow of the Holy Spirit and let him fill you with excitement as you serve him. Let this hope burst forth within you, releasing a continual joy. Don’t give up in a time of trouble,[e] but commune with God at all times.Take a constant interest in the needs of God’s beloved people and respond by helping them. And eagerly welcome people as guests into your home.” Romans 12:9-13 (TPT)
As I contemplated which verses I’d highlight for our Favorite Verse Friday, these verses were read during our intercessor prayer call this morning. I felt the familiar quicken in my heart that I was to share them with you.
As these difficult days continue, and we try to navigate through, let these words encourage you.
First off, don’t give up! Nothing catches God by surprise. Although I don’t believe He orchestrated COVID, He has allowed it. He has a plan and a purpose in this, which we can’t see. But we can understand that He is working it all out for the “good of those who love Him and have been called according to it His purpose.” (Romans 8:28 NIV)
Secondly, reach out to others. Ann Voskamp says, “The only abundant way forward is to give ourselves forward.” Today, why not find a need within your corner of the world and meet that need? Whether it’s a hug to someone desperate for human touch (yes, I still hug in the COVID world), a kind word to a weary mom stressed about her kids going back to school, or perhaps it’s bringing food to the family in your neighborhood who’s father lost his job. Look around you; God will show you who needs “the gift” of you today.
Then love, as you’ve never loved before. Ask God to fill you with His compassion and agape love. Remove the pretenses and love unconditionally. Honestly, now more than ever, what our world needs is love.
**Although I only highlighted the verses read during our prayer call, the entire chapter of Romans 12 is a good one. Click into this link to read it on the BibleGateway site.