For Love’s Sake – Our Daily Bread, ODB Devotional, 13th May 2023
Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.
Running a marathon is about pushing yourself, physically and mentally. For one high school runner, however, competing in a cross-country race is all about pushing someone else. In every practice and meet, fourteen-year-old Susan Bergeman pushes older brother, Jeffrey, in his wheelchair. When Jeffrey was twenty-two months old, he went into cardiac arrest—leaving him with severe brain damage and cerebral palsy. Today, Susan sacrifices personal running goals so Jeffrey might compete with her. What love and sacrifice!
The apostle Paul had love and sacrifice in mind when he encouraged his readers to be “devoted to one another” (Romans 12:10). He knew that the believers in Rome were struggling with jealousy, anger, and sharp disagreements (v. 18). So, he encouraged them to let divine love rule their hearts. This kind of love, rooted in Christ’s love, would fight for the highest possible good of others. It would be sincere, and it would lead to generous sharing (v. 13). Those who love this way are eager to consider others more worthy of honor than themselves (v. 16).
As believers in Jesus, we’re running a race of love while helping others finish the race too. Though it can be difficult, it brings honor to Jesus. So, for love’s sake, let’s rely on Him to empower us to love and serve others.
By Marvin Williams
What does it mean for you to love others as God loves them? How does Jesus reveal that love is more than emotion?
God of love, for love’s sake and Your glory, help me to consider others before I consider myself.
In many of Paul’s letters, he follows a simple pattern. He begins with a section of doctrine or teaching, then finishes with a section of application. We see this in Ephesians, where chapters 1–3 provide doctrine (what we believe) and chapters 4–6 offer practical ideas for living out that truth (how we behave). In Romans, chapters 1–11 offer a robust defense and explanation of the gospel of God’s grace and chapters 12–16 provide application for living gospel-based lives. Romans 12:9–18 is a classic example of this practical counsel. It’s noteworthy that most of this counsel pertains to how we treat one another as humans, both inside and outside the family of faith (vv. 10–18), for we live out the gospel in relationship with others.