Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. (Romans 12:9-10)
During this Pentecost season, may we examine ourselves as our nation is reeling from the effects of hatred and strife. It cannot be lost on us that the first word describing the fruit or evidence of a Spirit-baptized life is love. We hear the reverberating sound of John the Beloved, “God is love.” We pay close attention as Jesus described the command that fulfills all the law and prophets, “Love the Lord your God with all . . . and your neighbor as yourself,” then portrays “neighbor” as one different from us. Let us be people motivated and compelled by love because of the work of the Spirit in our hearts.
- Pray for a fresh baptism in the Holy Spirit that produces and bears the fruit of love.
- Pray that all barriers that divide be torn down, labels that harm be eliminated, and that hatred and strife cease and are replaced with love and joy.
- Pray that the Holy Spirit will give our nation’s leaders wisdom, guidance, and courage to address and bring change to all systemic issues in the fabric of our country that cause harm and division.
- Pray that the Church will emerge as the heart, voice, and hands of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.