By Meg Bucher, Crosswalk.com
Cling to What Is Good
By Meg Bucher
“Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good.” - Romans 12:9 NLT
Sadness will teach us to cling to what is good for survival. In the ugly cry moments in our lives, we can hold tightly to Christ Jesus and know He absolutely understands how we feel. Paul’s words in the verse above are often the very reason we are clinging as we cry, holding tightly to the comfort Christ Jesus provides. “Don’t just pretend to love others,” he wrote to the Romans, “really love them.” When we really love others, it’s bound to get painful at times. We are all flawed human beings. Paul wrote earlier in his letter to the Roman church, “we all fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)
Deuteronomy 31:6 says, “So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 NLT
Joshua was about to take over for Moses, and God’s people were the most fickle to lead. Always rebelling and losing faith. The Lord faithfully encouraged him through Moses. The Lord is faithful to encourage us today, too. When life gets hard, and we find ourselves clinging …turn to the only One who can mend the cracks in our armor.
Praise You for the way You faithfully place people around us. When the hurt is so bad, and the fear of connecting with others is paralyzing, please remind us who we are in Christ Jesus. More than conquerors, Your children equip us with hearts full of encouragement. Fill us with the love we need to heal and move forward and spill onto others who are discouraged and in need of a faith-filled friend. Help us to be encouraged by the same words Moses encouraged Joshua with:
“Then Moses called for Joshua, and as all Israel watched he said to him, ‘Be strong and courageous! For you will lead these people into the land that they LORD swore to their ancestors he would give them. You are the one who will divide it among them as their grants of land. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.’” Deuteronomy 31:7-8 NLT
Intersecting Faith and Life:
There is no one person we can guarantee will love us perfectly, but You do, Father. Help us to gain a clear understanding of who we are in Christ, and allow others grace. Help us to see the good in each of us, created in Your image. Father, when we find ourselves clinging, it can cause us to fear. Remind us in those moments, You have placed people to encourage and love us, even at times when we’re having trouble loving ourselves.
Father, when the hurts are too big to talk about, we know the Holy Spirit takes them to you in prayer, and You meet us right where we are at. We confess our disobedient tendency to quit and run on people, God. It’s hard, and You don’t shame or blame us for our feelings of fear. But help us to stick it out more, God. To stay with people, and learn the remarkable relationships which grow from forgiveness, mercy, grace, and compassion.
Mature us to be strong and courageous and to cling to the good. Allow us to see people the way You do, Father, fearfully and wonderfully made.
In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Photo credit: ©Getty Images/Pcess609
Meg writes about everyday life within the love of Christ at megbucher.com. She is the author of “Friends with Everyone, Friendship within the Love of Christ,” “Surface, Unlocking the Gift of Sensitivity,” “Glory Up, The Everyday Pursuit of Praise,” “Home, Finding Our Identity in Christ,” and "Sent, Faith in Motion." Meg earned a Marketing/PR degree from Ashland University but stepped out of the business world to stay home and raise her two daughters …which led her to pursue her writing passion. A contributing writer for Salem Web Network since 2016, Meg is now thrilled to be a part of the editorial team at Salem Web Network. Meg loves being involved in her community and local church, leads Bible study, and serves as a youth leader for teen girls.