Thursday, February 11, 2010

Romans 12: 9-21

With all this snow, I've found my normal routine disrupted. There is definitely a positive side to that; I've had an unexpected breather between what was the most demanding holiday season I've ever had personally and the rigors of a priest's Lenten schedule (with Lent starting this Wednesday).

The downside is that it is easy to lose track of what needs to be done when. Like this devotional, for instance. I just remembered it now, several hours after when it should have been posted.

Fortunately, it is an easy reading. No obscure images, no tough issues, no questions in regard to what the writer is talking about. But if this passage is easy to understand and write about, it is equally hard to live. I do not know that there is one line in this whole passage that, as good as it sounds and as right as I know it is, would not give me trouble in faithfully and consistently putting it into practice across the board.

Take the very first sentence, for instance. We are to let love be sincere (or genuine) by hating what is evil and clinging fast to what is good. That is probably well worth memorizing and plastering on our bathroom mirror, the refrigerator, the dash of our car, in our office. It is well worth committing to prayer and whole heartedly pursuing as a goal.

But the sad truth is…standing firm against evil and resolutely holding fast to what is good is a huge challenge. Evil, in its less blatant forms, can be so alluring and inviting. Being good—little goodie two shoes—in a culture that would rather take things more casually—can be exceptionally difficult. Sadder still, that means that far too often my love will be compromised and self serving.

So there it is. You probably don’t need my help in the slightest to understand perfectly well what is written here. But my guess is, we all need God’s help—and lots of it—to live it!

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