Romans 12:16 3/9/16

IBS

3/9/16

Romans 12:16

“Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.”

Good morning Lord thank you for new breath and mercies this morning. Please reveal to me the knowledge in your word.

Romans 12:9-21, the passage of scripture that this verse falls in, is all about love in action, practical love. Paul talks first of sincere love. “Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.” He goes on talking about hospitality and blessing those who persecute you. Then comes our verse. Paul starts by saying, “Live in harmony with one another.” This is a command. It not a “oh if you can” or “if they aren’t being difficult.” No this is in all things. No matter who they are. Paul continues with an explicit example. He says don’t be too proud to associate with those who are deemed “of low position.” Be willing to associate with those people, because inside they are no different than me. We are both sinners, equal at the cross of Jesus. For me, this isn’t as difficult for me on the outside as it is on the inside. I can much easier be hospitable and “love” someone on the outside than have a pure heart in that love. Too often I don’t have the right heart and motives. I’m not saying I have the outward love down every time either. I know I don’t, but I know for me, it’s a lot harder for me to have the right heart. Sometimes the Lord asks me to show love to certain individuals who I really have a hard time doing so. Whether its because I deem myself better or because I don’t deem them worthy of my love it’s a sick twist thought process. It’s embarrassing to verbalize this out loud but it’s the truth. The Lord has shed some serious light on certain areas of my life showing me how imperfect I am. So many times I set these really high expectations for myself and then get bummed when I fail them. I so want to do things perfect that often times my actions don’t match my heart. Why do I want to be perfect? Because people will see. Because I want praise, I want rewards. Too often my actions are connected to a wicked heart seeking affirmation from man instead of actions that are driven because Christ’s love compels me. I want to be perfect. The Lord has wrecked me with this revelation. Though it has wrecked me, I’m so thankful for it because he has given me a counter revelation as well; that I don’t have to be perfect. I don’t have to be this flawless person that always does the right thing. I don’t have to walk this slack line constantly being afraid of failing. I don’t have to be perfect, because Jesus is! The less I worry about myself and focus on allowing the Lord to fill me with his Spirit that is when the Lord fixes my heart to match my outside actions. Those are the moments where I am able to abide by this verse. Not because of me, in fact it’s the opposite. Only when I force myself out of the equation and allow myself to be used as a conduit can the Lord fully use me to convey His perfect love. The Lord is the only one whose love is perfect. I am only able to purely love those “in low position,” anyone for that matter, if I allow the Lords love to flow through me.

Application: I cannot love on my own. I need the Lord Jesus’s love in order to love anyone

How: Today I wrote love on my hand to constantly remind me to get out of the way and let the Lord love others through me.

Lord, please fill me with your pure and beautiful love for I cannot love on my own.

 

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