Showing posts with label Christian love. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Christian love. Show all posts

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Praying for love

And this is my prayer:

that your love may overflow
more and more
with knowledge and insight,

that you may be able to discern
and do
what is best,

that you may be truthful
yet inoffensive
as you innocently await
the Day of Christ.

Philippians 1:9-10

prayer-a-phrased by Mary Harwell Sayler, ©2017, using a variety of Bible translations from Bible Gateway.

Most of the previous paraphrases on this blog have been collected into the book, What the Bible Says About Love. Lord willing, this begins a series on what the Bible says.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Dressed in love

Above all things
deck yourself out
in love
which ties you
to Christ’s perfection!

Colossians 3:14 prayer-a-phrased by Mary Harwell Sayler, ©2017.

Praise God, these prayerful paraphrases have now been collected in the book, What the Bible Says About Love.

Lord willing, this will be the first of a series on prayer-a-phrased scriptures about a variety of Bible topics, so please let me know which biblical subjects you’d most like to see in one book. Thanks and blessings.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Love and honor others

Devote yourself
to loving God’s children.

Give unto others
the honor you want.

Romans 12:10 prayer-a-phrased by Mary Harwell Sayler, ©2017, after reading various translations on Bible Gateway.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Call to freedom

Brothers! Sisters!
You are free
to do as you please!

But, oh, don’t squander
your liberty
on enslaving

Use your freedom
to help others,
serve others,
and live a life of love.

Galatians 5:13 prayer-a-phrased by Mary Harwell Sayler, © 2017, after reading various translations on Bible Gateway.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Loving like Jesus

Every time I’ve read John 13:34, I’ve been puzzled by Jesus’ words: “I’m giving you a new commandment: love one another.” Since I’ve heard that longer than I can remember, this word of exhortation did not seem new to me. But when I looked up the phrase “love one another” on Bible Gateway, I found no earlier reference.

In the Hebrew Bible, however, God says, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might,” Deuteronomy 6:4-5. Bringing that love down to earth, Leviticus 19:18 says, “you shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

In Matthew 26:37-40, Jesus put those two commands together by saying, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment, and the second is like unto it, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

A problem arises, though, when people have trouble loving themselves, much less their neighbors! Nevertheless, God still wants this, and so the New Testament clarifies the concept of the true love to be found in Christ Jesus:

• He spoke healing words.
• He called people by name.
• He showed God’s love.
• He taught the kind attitudes we’re to have.
• He gave His life.
• He brought us life eternal.
• He called us to be brothers and sisters
• He empowered us to be children of God.
• He continues to pray for us now.

In the hours before His death, Jesus told His disciples: “I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I’ve loved you, so you also must love one another,” John 13:34.

Hopefully, we’ll love and appreciate ourselves and our neighbors. Regardless, we must love one another as conduits of Jesus Christ, Whose love flows in and through us. We can't do this by ourselves, but we can agree to it. We can give Jesus' command our amen.

May the Almighty God our Father help us to allow Christ’s love to pour forth profusely. Let it be! So be it. Amen.

Mary Harwell Sayler, © 2017, with scriptures from many of the translations on Bible Gateway

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Deck yourself out in love

Colossians 3:12-17

You are God’s chosen ones –
the holy elect –
dearly loved!

Now clothes yourselves
in mercy, kindness,
gentleness, and patience,
so you can bear up
under complaints
and forgive one another
as the Lord has forgiven you.

Beyond this
clothe yourself in love –
the perfect bond –

and let the peace of Christ
control your hearts.

You’re called to be
One Body in peace,
so be thankful!

Let the word of Christ live
in you richly
as you teach
and exhort one another
with wisdom,
singing Psalms and hymns
and spiritual songs
with hearts given in grace
to God.

And whatever you do –
whether in words or actions –
do all in the Name
of the Lord Jesus
with thanks to God our Father
to Whom we belong
in Christ.

© 2015, Mary Harwell Sayler prayer-a-phrased today’s reading from Colossians with help from the many translations on Bible Gateway.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Born again in love

1 John 4:7-10

Beloved, let’s love one another!

Love comes from God,
so everyone who knows love
knows God,
and is born again.

People who show no love
do not know God
for God is love.

And the love of God
became clear
as God sent
His only begotten Son
into the world
to imprint His life upon us.

So, our love comes,
not because we love God,
but because God loves us
and gave His Son
as the expiation –

the compensation,
the penance,
the punishment,
the amends –

for our sins.

©2015, Mary Harwell Sayler, poet, writer, and lifelong lover of Christ, the Bible, and the church, prayer-a-phrased today’s reading in I John by comparing many of the translations found on Bible Gateway.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

What love does

Remind everyone to obey
those in authority
and be ready to do good.

Remind everyone not
to talk ill of anyone nor
quarrel, but be
gentle and respectful of all.

Remember how we once
foolishly disobeyed? We, too,
went the way of envy
and other evils, and, oh, how
we hated one another!

Then God
our Savior
showed us true
kindness and love
by saving us –
not because
of anything
we had done,
but because
of God’s own

And God cleansed us from sin
and gave us a fresh start
and gave us a new life in the Spirit
and generously poured into us
the Holy Spirit of our Savior
Jesus Christ.

God’s grace made us righteous.
God's gift gave us confidence
and hope
of life
forever in Christ.

Titus 3:1-7

©2014, Mary Harwell Sayler, a poet, writer, and lifelong lover of the Bible, prayer-a-phrased today’s reading in Titus by comparing translations on Bible Gateway.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Living the love

Romans 12:9-21 as prayer-a-phrased
by Mary Harwell Sayler

Let your love be genuine
and sincere.

Abhor what is evil.
Hold on to what is good.

Love one another
like an affectionate family.

Take delight
in honoring each other.

Be enthusiastic!

Let the Holy Spirit
glow in you
as you serve the Lord.

Oh, how blessed you are
to have hope!

Hope helps you to be patient
in times of trouble,
but keep on praying too.

Give what you can
to God’s people,
and warmly
welcome strangers.

Bless and do not curse
those who mistreat you.

Rejoice in the joy of others,
and weep with those who weep.

Regard everyone fairly
with equal care,
and never think of yourself
as better or wiser
than anyone else.

Do not pay back evil for evil,
but let your actions honor
all that's good.

As much as possible,
live at peace with other people
and look not to retaliate,
but leave it up to God.

If your enemies are hungry,
feed them!

If your enemies thirst,
give them something to drink.

Showing love like this
will convict them
and convince them of shame
as surely as if they carried
a pan of red-hot coals
on their heads
for everyone to see!

Let no evil defeat you,
but overcome evil
with good.

©2014, Mary Harwell Sayler, a life-long student of the Bible and poet-author of 26 traditionally published books, prayer-a-phrased the above poem by researching and reading the wealth of translations found on Bible Gateway.


Monday, January 21, 2013

Love builds the body of Christ

As diverse peoples get together, problems arise! Rarely do the difficulties come from hypocrisy or anything false or pretentious but, more likely, from differing ways of interpreting, communicating, and acting on biblical truths.

The early church dealt with this so often that the Epistles frequently speak of inspired ways to work through cultural clashes. However, in today’s reading from Ephesians, the Apostle Paul calls on Christians to do more than just get along. He calls on them (and us!) to love one another and see one another as a vital and gifted part of the Body of Christ – not only as God envisions us but as the Holy Spirit equips us to be.

Writing from prison Paul exhorts the Christians in Ephesus – and everywhere – to get God’s boundless vision of who we are in Him:

As the Lord’s own captive,
I beg you
to lead a life worthy of the calling
to which you have been called.

With all humility, gentleness,
and patience,
accept one another
in love,

doing everything you can
to keep united in the Spirit,
tied with bonds
of peace.

One body, one Spirit calls you
to one hope, one Lord,
one faith, one baptism,

one God and Father of all,
Who is above all and through all

and in all of you!

In Christ,
each of us has grace
in varying measure.

To some, Christ gave gifts
to be apostles, some prophets,
some the ability to go tell
the Good News, some to shepherd
or teach God’s people, but all
equipped to minister to others
and build up the Body of Christ

as we come us together
in the unity of faith
and knowledge of God’s Son –
maturing into the fullness of Christ.

No longer must we be children,
tossed about by personal preferences
or blown away by anything new!
Nor are we to be tricked
or scheme to get our way.

No! Speaking the truth in love,
we will grow up and into Christ,

the Head by Whom the whole
Body of The Anointed One
is joined and knitted together –

ligament by ligament
(person by person)

until each works well together
and helps the church body
to build strength
and grow strong in love.

© 2013, Mary Harwell Sayler, prayer-a-phrase of Ephesians 4:1-7, 11-16. All rights reserved, but pass it on!


What the Bible Says About Love - the book

God IS love. From Genesis to Revelation, the Bible reveals the timeless, unchanging, ever-present love of God the Father, Son, and Holy S...