Closing the Gap 4.26.18

Week 16 “Live in Harmony with One Another”

Day 4

Pray:

Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.

Read:

Rom. 12:9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. 14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 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.

Reflect:

A person who is moody tends to interact with others largely based on what he is currently feeling on the inside.  The opposite is a person whose interior feelings do not dictate his exterior demeanor. Everyone has moods, but not everyone is held captive to them. What is your mood right now?  Are you feeling happy or sad? Are you feeling hopeful or discouraged? Are you ambivalent, caught between competing emotions? To live in harmony with others requires that you enter into their lives and that you do not live entirely out of your own circumstances and moods.  How can you rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn in an authentic way? Remember – and believe – that there are people who care about you who are reading this passage as well. They must be aware of your joy and your sadness, if they are to practice this kind of love towards you.  Be authentic and be open about the reality of your internal and external circumstances. This does not mean that if others are sad, you must disguise your joy, or if they are happy, you must hide your sadness. God desires for his children to live in harmonious relationships. When people living in very different life situations move towards each other in love, for God’s glory and for their own good, it creates a beautiful harmony. Furthermore, when each person enters into another’s joy and sadness in appropriate ways, there is an ongoing opportunity for balanced living.  Their joy gives perspective to your sadness and their sadness gives perspective to your joy.  Joy and sadness are both valid expressions of a gospel life. When joy lacks the perspective of sadness, it can become “earthbound” and lose its eternal foundation.  When sadness lacks the perspective of joy, it can take over a person’s soul and remove gospel hope. Live in harmony by choosing to enter into the lives of others and by letting them enter deeply into yours.  

Pray:

(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.

 

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