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Daily Verse
July 22, 2005 Suffering in Love

ďAnd if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. Now you are Christ's body, and individually members of it.Ē 1 Corinthians 12:26 Ė 27

One of the greatest characteristic of the early church was their zealous love for God and His church. Of course, it would be an interesting sight to see people riding emotional waves, one hour rejoicing, the next grieving, the next singing, and the next crying all depending on the emotional state of each believer. But I am convinced that it wasnít Paulís intention to cause each church and each believer to ride emotional roller coasters, but to think of the Church as a true family and therefore be devoted to each other in love.

True devotion to one another in Christian love is more than an emotion, but it is an internal change in which God through the power of the Holy Spirit loves others through us. We are Godís instrument to love those who are unlovable and who are marginalized and sick. As an instrument, we are not on our own, but a beautiful work of God to be used at His discretion.

We are not toys or robots, and therefore, it is much more exciting to know we are being used by God to love others. We belong to one another in Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, but all are equal in Godís eyes. When one is sick we pray for healing. When one is blessed we rejoice. There is no competition to see who is more highly favored, because when one is blessed, all are blessed.

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