By Pastor Tommy Pophin
It is an exciting time for high school basketball fans in Palo Pinto and Parker counties. Schools like Millsap, Santo, Graford, Brock and Peaster did an excellent job of advancing beyond regular district play into the post-season. With this in mind, my question is: “What do we do to inspire young people when such accomplishments take place?” The answer is simple: We honor, love and encourage them.
Paul gives us instruction about how to love and value people. He writes in Romans 12:9-16 these words: “Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. . . bless and do not curse.
Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people … Do not be conceited.”
Paul’s instruction goes contrary to human thoughts and ways. Naturally, we are very self-centered people looking out for ourselves. When we talk about our public schools, our children and our youth, we are often critical about who they are and what they are being taught. We are negative. Paul says to do the opposite. What’s the opposite? It’s sincerely loving, clinging to what is good, being devoted to one another in love, being zealous with spiritual fervor, serving the Lord, joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithfully praying for our youth, sharing what we have, practicing hospitality, blessing and not cursing, rejoicing when they achieve, living in harmony with one another, being humble, associating with all people and not being conceited.