Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; (12) Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; (13) Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.Romans 12:11-13
There is a sense in which the passage we have been studying this week is talking about godly priorities. The person who has been on the receiving end of the mercies of God should have their priorities and values change as they are transformed by the Holy Spirit. There is a renewing of the mind that takes place for the child of God. This leads to an authentic love for God and others as we saw in the verses 9 and 10. Now we see more values affected. These values are all flowing out of a genuine brotherly love for others. Paul, under the inspiratin of the Holy Spirit lists them here:
- “not slothful in business”- The person who has a genuine brotherly love for others takes responsibility for themselves and others by working hard. They are not lazy. If they can provide for themselves and for others they do.
- “fervent in spirit”- This person also has a passion for the spiritual part of life. They are passionate about the things of God.
- “serving the Lord”- This person realizes that to show others love is to show the Lord love when done as God desires. They care about what God thinks first and foremost.
- “Rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation”- This person looks to the confident assurance of their ultimate destiny in Christ Jesus, no matter the circumstance. They endure difficulty celebrating what awaits them in the next life.
- “continuing instant in prayer”- Praying is the natural course of this persons life as they respond to their circumstances whatever they may be.
- “Distributing to the necessity of saints”- They see their brothers and sisters in Christ as family to be taken care of, and loved. This happens through meeting the needs that they can help meet.
- “given to hospitality”- These people are ready to use their home and their possessions to meet the needs of those around them, even people who are new to them that need shelter and help, especially those of the household of faith.
Not being conformed to this world and being transformed by the renewing of our minds has real world, every day implications. The above list and descriptions are not theoretical “nice to have” values. These are the real character qualities and behaviors of those who are being transformed into authentic, others-focused followers of Christ.
Look at the above list and pick out the top 3 items that need a response from you. Do something today to challenge yourself in that area.