Saturday, February 17, 2018

Perhaps I Can Love

Perhaps murder and suicide are really two sides of the same coin whose ends are nonsensical and sudden death. The common, primary active ingredient in both acts is unresolved anger, anger that is built-up for years until the trigger is pulled in an unbearable, godless moment.

Perhaps killing another is an external expression of that pent-up, seething anger, where suicide is an internal suppression of rage. (After all, depression, in many cases, so I've felt and heard, is anger turned inward.) Murder-suicide being a combination of both. Both expressions are pathetic and tragic, and rip to shreds the hearts of those who were close to the victims. I'm so saddened to learn what one human being is capable of doing to another soul. It's soulless. What can I do?

Perhaps I can love the outcast, befriend the troubled, offer hope to the hopeless, spiritually adopt the lonely as my brothers and sisters. To do so, I'll have to risk being vulnerable, authentic, and genuine.

Perhaps risk mitigation comes in the form of love; I love because God first loved me.

Then, that settles it. It's time for me to let love have its way with my spirit. He is my strength and my song. In Him alone can I trust with my precious soul. If perfect love casts out fear, let me love fearlessly. Use me, Lord! May my life be used to save another soul.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Harmony, Peace, Good - Goals for 2018 and Beyond (Part 1)

Live in Harmony with One Another. 

Live in harmony with one another. If two singers sing the same notes at the same pitch, it is not harmony. If one sings melody while another sings bass, it is not quite harmony either. But, if each sings notes, even words, unique to themselves while complementary to the other, that is harmony.

I must sing as I am able, in my voice range and with tonal quality and dynamic volume, using meaningful and thoughtful lyrics that come from my heart.

Yet, if all the world's a stage, it is not my time to bellow a solo. Alas, the stage is quite populated. Nor am I the Director who decides who else is on the stage. To seek to harmonize, I must listen carefully to other voices as well. Music is the result of collaboration, be it duo, quartet, or orchestra.

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord." To the contrary, "if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:16-21)

I believe there is a reason Paul included this advice to the Christians and would-be Christians in Rome. It is simply this:

This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:3-4)

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Note to the reader:

To live in harmony with one another is just one of my many goals for 2018 and beyond. My other goals include living peaceably with all, and overcoming evil with good, phrases also found in the same passage above. I will write about those goals in later posts.

My hope and prayer for you are that God draws you to Himself, and then you diligently seek Him. For God so loved the world (John 3:16a), absolutely, and that includes you specifically.

If this devotional has touched your heart, please do not keep it for yourself. Share it. Leave a comment if you'd like. But most of all, thank God, the Father of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.