"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."
Our true character is shown in the day to day things of life. Wow, my character isn't always great - I'm too often living on the emotions of life's ups and downs of the roller coaster of life rather than being consistent, so I have a lot of work to do. Maybe you do too. I believe though that we have a patient and gracious heavenly Father who loves us the same no matter which way the wind is blowing. So, we may not always live up to Romans 12:12, but we are called to it, and we are not alone - we have the Holy Spirit. When I do live up to it I can be a good reflection of Jesus.
"Joyful in hope"
What would real joy look like in my life? Smiles, peace, contentment, kindness, gentleness, blessing others. It is having these things knowing God is in control, even midst the uncertainties of life. Hope in God looks like trust and obedience.
"Patient in affliction"
When things don't go well - when we suffer, we are called to have patience. What does this look like? Quiet faithfulness! Trust. Waiting faithfully on God, knowing that He can make good come out of any situation, and He will deliver us from it.
"Faithful in prayer"
Not knowing what is ahead we are called to pray. Being consistent in our conversation with God. Being dedicated and persistent in prayer. Being committed to praying. Never giving up. Sometimes we hang by a thread to God, but prayer is all we have, so starting somewhere is better than not talking to God at all. We also have confidence that God cares for us and He listens - He is always there.
My prayer today:
"Father God, there's a lot of stuff in this very short verse. Help me to remember it, and to live it out every day. I need you Holy Spirit to fill my life, to help me and guide me. I need you Holy Spirit to strengthen me and keep me in check - ALL THE TIME! Guide me, help me to remember God's Word. Help me to speak when I need to speak. Help me to be quiet when I need to be quiet. Give me the words to say, and may I be faithful with the gifts and abilities you have given me. In Jesus' name, Amen."