12:9-12 “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.”
Romans 12:9-12 (New King James Version)
We live in a polarizing time in which virtually every subject matter can be divisive. Although the recent cultural mantra has been, “We’re all in this together,” the reality is our different perspectives, our various upbringings and personal experiences result in different responses to the same situation.
Too often we approach every subject matter as a “war” that must be won with a plethora of “fact-finding” minutiae that closely resembles insults to best serve our own narrative.
However, as Christians, the only thing that we are called to “win” is souls, and I promise you that this belittling approach is ineffective and not accurately reflective of Christ’s love to a lost world.
Today’s passage (expanded to Romans 12:9-18) challenges me to:
* Respectfully honor those whose opinions differ from mine
* Continually pray in every situation
* Avoid hypocrisy
* Be hospitable and return good for evil
* Stay humble, and not prideful in my own opinion
The truth is we all can learn from each other. We don’t always have to agree with everything — and we shouldn’t, but we can still lovingly treat people with respect as God commands us to: Love God and love people.
Athlete, instead of being critical, be open to critical thinking … and allow God’s grace and truth to bridge any gaps.