I won't say that I read the Bible much, but sometimes I read it with my pen and notebook handy, and sometimes I actually pay attention. Thanks to the embrace of a neighborhood Bible study, I'm paying attention a little more lately. A few minutes ago I read Romans 12:9, which states: "Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good" (NIV). This verse comes in a section with the heading "Love." The final words of the chapter: "Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."
Where did my thoughts immediately travel? To Meg and her brother Charles Wallace, somewhere in space trying to find their father, trying to get home, trying to resist evil. Meg broke the spell holding her little brother by saying over and over that she loved him. She couldn't fight the evil any other way and win. This, I believe, is because good is God and love is God and only he can conquer evil.
So, then, to cling to what is good must be to cling to God, right?
How do I do that? I could follow a list of what it means to do good and shun evil, but what if it just made me a delusional Pharisee? Do I even know what is evil in my life? I can list off the great and terrible evils that even our society puts a black mark on and imprisons people for, and I can say that I'm not involved in those so I must be avoiding evil. I think those crimes are despicable, so I must hate what is evil. But am I just living on the outskirts? Maybe the evil isn't in my life but could it creep in? "Love must be sincere." The whole list of how we ought to treat one another, especially our enemies—I want to follow that sincerely. I want to continue to abhor evil and keep my focus where it should be.
Easy to do, yes? Here I am in my blessed little life with a caring, loving husband and a happy little boy. But IT tries to sneak in and tell me lies about myself–that I'm not taking care of my family the way I should or that I'm not worthy of such blessings. Well I don't want to cling to that nonsense. I think I need to get the focus off of me.