by Rick Warren
“Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.” Romans 12:9-10 (NLT)
If you want lasting change in your life, you must fill your life with love.
Love is the only thing that can change the unchangeable. Love invigorates. Love revitalizes. Love renews. Love refreshes. Love is the most powerful force in the universe, because God is love. It doesn’t say he has love; it says he is love. Love heals what cannot otherwise be healed. Love uplifts. Love strengthens. Love energizes. Love empowers.
“Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.” Romans 12:9-10 (NLT).
“Take delight in honoring each other” — I love that! You know what that means? It means when people in your small group have a win in health, finances, or any goal they’ve set, you need to celebrate with them. Celebrate their wins. You lost two more pounds? Congratulations! You got a little bit out of debt? Fantastic! You had a breakthrough in your marriage? Terrific! The Bible says to take delight in honoring each other and show genuine affection.
Here’s the amazing thing: God has wired the universe so that when you help other people, God takes care of your problems. God is looking down on you not to say, “Are you helping yourself?” but “Are you helping others?” Do you want help with your goals? Start helping other people with their goals. Show love. Give yourself away. There is healing in giving back.
Remember the story of Job where he lost everything? He lost his health, he lost his family, he lost his wealth. He lost it all. At the end of the book, God gave it all back to Job. Why? Because Job prayed for himself? No. It says, “After Job had prayed for his friends, the LORD restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before” Job 42: 9-11 (NIV).
Why do you need to be in a small group? Not just so other people can help you, but so you can help them. So you can pray for those people, and then God can help you. Give yourself away in love, and then watch God work in your life.
– Think of the ways you show love to others each day. What is the motivation behind your love?
– How has loving others blessed your life?
– Who are the people in your life who need your love and support or need you to celebrate with them today?
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