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I couldn’t help but pray through the verses in Romans chapter 12. They are making a huge impression in my mind and heart. What does it mean to be a friend? This is something I’m taking on in a new “Friendship Series” where I’ll share what I’ve been learning and challenged in.
9 Love must be honest and true. Hate what is evil. Hold on to what is good. 10 Love each other deeply. Honor others more than yourselves. 11 Never let the fire in your heart go out. Keep it alive. Serve the Lord.
Imagine honoring others more than yourselves. A tough concept in reality. Serving the Lord tends to put things in perspective for us. We’re not the center of the universe. God, maybe we love You and each other deeply.
12 When you hope, be joyful. When you suffer, be patient. When you pray, be faithful. 13 Share with God’s people who are in need. Welcome others into your homes.
I got stuck on the first part of these verses. I tend to be anxious when I’m waiting and hoping something will happen. This says to be joyful! What a transforming statement! God, let us be joyful as we wait.
14 Bless those who hurt you. Bless them, and do not call down curses on them.
This is a tough one when we are hurt. Grumbling in my heart (or to my husband) about a way I was wounded is nothing close to a blessing. God let us be kind and pray for those who disappoint us!
15 Be joyful with those who are joyful. Be sad with those who are sad.
I love the fact that these verses say to be sad with those who are sad. There are times when no words are needed, (probably more often than not) and all we should do is sit with a friend in the moment. God, help me not to feel like I have to say encouraging words. Give me the wisdom to be silent in moments and words only when You want.
God, help us to invite others to join us in something we’re doing. Not to a perfectly clean home with the floors spotless and laundry put away. We want friends that know the true us, and want to be those friends to others. Sandy toes in the summer and runny noses in the winter. Let us be transparent, joyful and bless them. Let us love each other deeply. Amen.