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9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Romans 12: 9-11 NIV
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ Matthew 25:40 NIV
Sincere love serves. True love sacrifices on behalf of its beloved. Jesus was the perfect example of this as He made the ultimate sacrifice of dying on the cross for our sins. To put us back into right relationship with God. To empower us through the resurrection to live lives of victory over sin. Jesus served His disciples. He even washed their feet.
As we cling to Jesus – the Author of sincere love, we are given the ability to love others in a way that glorifies God. In a way that goes beyond the norm. When we recognize that everything good that we seek is found in Jesus, and that His love satisfies every need we’ll ever have, then we are freed to think of others instead of our own needs. Because we are sure that our needs will be met. Experiencing real, true love in Christ moves us to put others above ourselves. Knowing how devoted Jesus is to us and know that we are fully accepted by God, frees us to be devoted to showing the love of Christ to others.
We honor God when we treat each other with respect. When we love each other well, God is honored, because it’s His Spirit in us that allows us to do this. It brings God great pleasure when we live together in unity and love. This is one of the ways we experience God – in healthy, loving community with others.
You see, serving others is serving God. Jesus told us in a parable that when we serve people who can do nothing for us, we serve Him. It’s easy to love those who love us. Those who can return our favors in some way or another. But God calls us higher, to serve those who can never repay us. To love the unlovely. To remember the forgotten. To invite the stranger in. To feed the hungry. To be His arms outstretched. Our spiritual fervor – our love and gratitude for God – is what will keep us moving in the direction of a broken and dying world. To go to the dark places. As we remember all God has done. How He gets down into our mess and rescues us. He lavishes us with love in ways we will never be able to reciprocate. He meets us in our desperation and absolute poverty and gives us exactly what we need. God loved us first, pursued us when we rejected Him, opposed Him even. As we receive this amazing love, it maintains our zeal for serving. May we all be moved with compassion to serve others as we remember all that God has done for us.
Love & Blessings,