Today’s AMI QT Devotional (new) is provided by Tina Hsu of Church of Southland in Anaheim, California.
Devotional Thought for Today
“The Power of Love”
1 Peter 4:8
“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.”
In my early attempts to understand and apply 1 Peter 4:8 into my life, I asked God how my acts and attempts to love—or any person’s love—could possibly cover a multitude of sins. We know that only Christ by His blood and righteousness could cover sin, and furthermore, a multitude of sins, right? Also, as much as I seek to love others, isn’t my love limited and always a work in progress? How could it wipe away or stop sin from happening?
It wasn’t until I served with my team in Asia for my one year AMI internship that this verse began to become real and clear to me. I can testify now that love amongst brothers and sisters through the thick and thin of teamwork really does cover, and prevent, the multitude of possible sins that could dishonor God and hurt one another.
As our team was formed to work towards one mission, all of our insecurities surfaced to the forefront, and we also brought out each other’s insecurities and fears: these would manifest itself through sinful behaviors, such as judging, holding grudges, and comparing. We would be busy protecting ourselves, and not supporting each other because covering our own insecurities was a greater priority. No one liked feeling inadequate. This is where I learned that sin is rooted in insecurity; and on the contrary, security comes from an intimate relationship with God. When we are secure, we sin less. Therefore, we learned and had to work at trying to reflect God’s love towards one another so that our security would increase and give us strength to sin less.
By providing a safe place in our team to be weak and make mistakes, we were tempted less to put each other down and empowered to love. I learned that we were “winning” at teamwork when we learned of each others’ insecurities (particularly in speaking and leading) and found ways to “love” one another’s insecurities away through words of encouragement and support. By doing so, the energy used towards comparing, blaming, being jealous, disputing over ideas, and judging lessened. Loving one another became above being right and seeing our ideas being executed.
Our growth began because one person in my life prayed this verse over our team regularly. Through prayer and waiting, we individually grew insight and understanding to live this out. Let me ask you this: What is the temperature of brotherly love in the team you are working with today? Pray 1 Peter 4:8 over your team and seek the Lord for power to love above all.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for the teammates, co-workers, and leaders You have placed in my life in this season. Give me wisdom in all of these relationships so that I could serve my co-workers well and choose to love them deeply. May our workplace be a place where grace is extended, and time is generously given to grow in understanding of how to love one another. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Isaiah 35
Lunch Break Study
Read Romans 12:9-13: “Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor; 11 not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, 13 contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality.”
Questions to Consider
- What does v. 9 imply about love?
- How does Apostle Paul instruct the church at Rome regarding love in vv. 10-11?
- Verse 10b says, “give preference to one another in honor; not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord,” implying that “giving preference to others in honor” is actually a way of serving the Lord. Who is someone God is leading you to love out of reverence for Christ and for the purpose of serving God?
- To love well requires searching the intention of the heart (discerning if there are evil or good motives), and being sincere, instead of hypocritical.
- Love is an action that involves choosing to be devoted to one another and choosing to honor and consider others above ourselves.
- Personal Response.
Reflect on Matthew 5:46-47 tonight: “If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?” Ask yourself this: Who are the people in your life right now that the Holy Spirit is convicting you to “go the extra mile” to express a love that reflects the love that Jesus defines.