On this last day of January – the month of “New Years resolutions” – many of which, I’m sorry to say, have probably been discarded or fallen into disuse… (Hopefully some have survived with determined discipline!)
So this morning, during my time of “coffee with the Lord,” I read a passage that was a little like reading through someone’s “New Years resolutions” on January 1! In my Bible it was given this title: “Behave Like a Christian!” Is consists of a varied and valuable list of behaviors that, if followed, would make an incredible impact on our world in the name of Christ and the Gospel! Here it is from the New Living Translation…
“Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them.
Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good.
Love each other with genuine affection,
Take delight in honoring each other.
Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.
Rejoice in your confident hope.
Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying.
When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them.
Always be eager to practice hospitality.
Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them.
Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep.
Live in harmony with each other.
Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people.
Don’t think you know it all
Never pay back evil with more evil.
Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable.
Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.
Never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say,
‘I will take revenge; I will pay them back, says the LORD. Instead, If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.’ [quotation from Proverbs 25:21-22]
DON’T LET EVIL CONQUER YOU, BUT CONQUER EVIL BY DOING GOOD.” (Romans 12:9-21)
So, I’m overwhelmed! Just overwhelmed!! I wrote this in the margin of my Bible today… “Where to begin? I fall so far short! I could camp out for a month here! No… for a year!! Oh Lord help me – assist me – enable me! Remind me! Transform me! I want to live like this! I long to be this kind of Christian… NOT OVERCOME BY EVIL AROUND ME, BUT OVERCOMING EVIL WITH GOOD!! That’s my prayer on January 31!