Love must be without hypocrisy. Detest evil; cling to what is good. 10 Show family affection to one another with brotherly love. Outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not lack diligence; be fervent in spirit; serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer. 13 Share with the saints in their needs; pursue hospitality. 14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep. 16 Be in agreement with one another. Do not be proud; instead, associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own estimation. 17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Try to do what is honorable in everyone’s eyes. 18 If possible, on your part, live at peace with everyone. 19 Friends, do not avenge yourselves; instead, leave room for His wrath. For it is written: Vengeance belongs to Me; I will repay, says the Lord. 20 But
If your enemy is hungry, feed him.
If he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
For in so doing
you will be heaping fiery coals on his head.
21 Do not be conquered by evil, but conquer evil with good. Romans 12:9-21
What more can I say about these verses? They boil down to a grand list concerning Christian ethics and a very tall order for each of us. I read it several times to allow the words to sink into my heart and settle in my soul. It stirred up a lot of emotions within me, as much of God’s word does. But mostly, it brings me to my knees and begs my heart to pray as I consider how I fall so short in mastering God’s instructions. Thankfully, because of His Living Word we can know and trust God will stick with us, guide us, rebuke us, shower us with grace and love us on the path that leads to Him.