Jesus, this teaching goes against our nature. We seek revenge when we are wronged, as a natural instinct of the flesh. Why, Jesus, would You have us act in this way? The answer is clear enough in all of Your teaching; one can not say they love You and continue hating their brethren.
Father, Paul is teaching us, in this letter to his young protégé, Timothy, that the law, when adhered to, does not present a problem. It is law breakers that will feel the rod of correction, sometimes physically, and sometimes in ways that simply convict us and make us feel terrible.
Father, we know that our goodness, absent the presence of the Holy Spirit in our hearts, is more than just inadequate. When our fleshly instincts take over, we know we are running away from Your presence. Your word tells us that You delight in your saints, a designation none of us feel able to accept, yet it remains Your expectation.
Father, You have taught us that there are two overriding commandments. First we are to love You with all of our heart, mind, and strength and second, we are to love our neighbors as our selves.
We know from Your word that perfect love casts out fear. That is why, Father, we can approach You and the challenges of life with confidence. Help us remember that neither man nor evil circumstance can do anything that would destroy Your love for us or our love for You.
Father, we know that the great tribulation will be a time of extreme testing. There are those who will endure the temptations to serve someone beside You, but here these saints, whose sins were washed away by the blood of Your perfect Lamb, Jesus, are depicted as an example of what You have in store for the faithful.
Father, we know You created us in Your own image. You had other choices! Here, the Apostle John, referred to as “the beloved apostle” by Jesus, teaches us that we have not yet seen what will be revealed. He simply tells us to take comfort that we will be as You.
Jesus, this set of verses may represent the greatest challenge we will ever experience. Your disgust with our being “lukewarm” is graphically clear. We get the point; but, Jesus, help us understand what it is to be “hot”.
Father in the midst of the turmoil of this world, Paul reminds us of what we can experience right now. We look forward to no more pain and disabilities for eternity. Here and now You grant us the fruits of the Spirit, freely given to all who seek them; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. No m [...]