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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Saturday, April 30, 2016
Today’s scripture reading:
Most of us have learned how to be courteous to others—how to speak kindly, avoid hurting their feelings, and appear to take an interest in them. We may even be skilled in pretending to show compassion when we hear of others’ needs, or to become indignant when we learn of injustice. But God calls us to real and sincere love that goes far beyond being hypocritical and polite. Sincere love requires concentration and effort. It means helping others become better people. It demands our time, money, and personal involvement. No individual has the capacity to express love to a whole community, but the body of Christ in your town does. Look for people who need your love, and look for ways you and your fellow believers can love your community for Christ.
We can honor others in one of two ways. One involves ulterior motives. We honor our bosses so they will reward us, our employees so they will work harder, the wealthy so they will contribute to our cause, the powerful so they will use their power for us and not against us. God’s way involves love. As Christians, we honor people because they have been created in God’s image, because they are our brothers and sisters in Christ, and because they have a unique contribution to make to Christ’s church. Does God’s way of honoring others sound too difficult for your competitive nature? Why not try to outdo one another in showing honor? Put others first! (NLT)
Romans 12:9-14 – Don’t just pretend that you love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side of the good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy in your work, but serve the Lord enthusiastically.
Be glad for all God is planning for you. Be patient in trouble, and always be prayerful. When God’s children are in need, be the one to help them out. And get into the habit of inviting guests home for dinner or, if they need lodging, for he night.
If people persecute you because you are a Christian, don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them.
Be ye . . . merciful, as your Father also is merciful. – Luke 6:36 (KJV)
Myla Rae Brueske (Arizona) titled her story “THE WAITRESS;” here is a portion of Myla’s story:
“After a long day of driving through the desert, my husband and I spied a little café and were anxious to eat and get back on the road. Our young waitress was quite frazzled and distracted. . . . . I was still complaining to my husband when she brought our bill. With a quiet sigh, she said, ‘I’m sorry for the mix-up. I guess I’m just mot in the swing of things yet. This is my first day back from maternity leave.’ Instantly, my attitude changed. . . . Instead of complaining to her boss as I had planned, I asked about her newborn and gave her a hug. We left a large tip, and I prayed for her as I walked back to the car.
“. . . I certainly learned a lesson from my experience in the café in treating people the way Christ would and putting others’ needs before my own. The next time I am having difficulty with someone, I am going to stop, take a long look at the situation, and ask myself, ‘What does this person need?’ It may be as simple as a word of encouragement or a prayer.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – How can I show Christlike mercy today?
Prayer: Dear Father, help us to be kind to everyone we meet and to show mercy to those we find difficult. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
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