Another day marked by tragic events. I was led to today’s verse by the radio this morning. Do not let evil overcome you, the radio announcer said, but overcome evil by good. Tonight I flipped the Bible to Romans and read the entire section:
Let love be sincere;
hate what is evil,
hold on to what is good;
love one another with mutual affection; anticipate one another in showing honor.
Do not grow slack in zeal,
be fervent in spirit,
serve the Lord.
Rejoice in hope,
endure in affliction,
persevere in prayer.
Contribute to the needs of the holy ones,
Bless those who persecute [you],
bless and do not curse them.
Rejoice with those who rejoice,
weep with those who weep.
Have the same regard for one another;
do not be haughty but associate with the lowly;
do not be wise in your own estimation.
Do not repay anyone evil for evil;
be concerned for what is noble in the sight of all.
If possible, on your part, live at peace with all.
Beloved, do not look for revenge but leave room for the wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”
Rather, “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 upon his head.”
Do not be conquered by evil but conquer evil with good.
This seems to say it all. If only it were easy to do. Let love be sincere. Love is not always easy. Sometimes we just pay it lip service. But God’s love is always sincere. God’s love for us is true even when we do wrong – even when we hurt Him. Can we show the same love to others?
Weep with those who who weep (our thoughts certainly go out to those who are suffering). But do not repay evil with evil. Live at peace with all. That is hard. Even harder is this: bless and do not curse those who persecute you!
Do not grow slack in zeal, be fervent in spirit. It is easy to to rejoice in God when the sun is shining. We cannot grow slack in zeal when dark clouds surround us. Even more must we be fervent. Even more must we ignite God’s fire.
Rejoice in hope — no matter the struggle, our hope in the the Lord, in His salvation, is empowering.
Endure in affliction — GOD will see us through!
Persevere in prayer — all we need to do is Pray!
Serve the Lord!
If we do these things, if we persevere in prayer and try to do these things, we will not be conquered. We will not be conquered by evil. We will conquer evil with good.
Take care of those who are suffering tonight. Wrap them in your loving embrace. May they rejoice in hope. And please bless those who have caused the suffering. I pray that they come to know you. Wrap them in your loving grace.