Romans 12:9,12 “Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good;...Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer.”
Kids love to watch magic and to try to perform magic. They are intrigued by the surprise of something being different than it seems.
Magicians work hard to perform their tricks and make it seamless so even the most discerning eye cannot find the method of trickery. They want to make us believe something that cannot be true. It is amazing to watch a good magician; it always makes me wonder how they did their trick.
It can be fun to trick people and play jokes on them but not when it comes to matters of the heart. Paul tells us in this passage that we need to let love be genuine, hate what is evil and hold on to what is good. He goes on with many words of guidance but the ones I held on to where in verse 12.
We cannot trick God. I am pretty good at tricking, or deceiving myself though. I allow myself to believe things that cannot be true and then I quickly slide toward falsehood and deception. When I turn my heart and eyes to the Lord and I am able to see the truth. I am able to rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering and persevere in prayer, only through the love and guidance of God. This allows my love to be genuine...
We cannot be genuine unless we allow you to be in us and us in you. It is your love that holds us to what is good and keeps us from evil. It is your love that causes us to rejoice in hope and be patient in suffering and persistent in prayer. As we hold your genuine love in our hearts, help us genuinely love all those people around us, today and all days. Amen.