Some pride themselves on being rule-followers. Others see rules as made to be broken.

Think of these “Rules for Relationships” like a ruler – helping us get things straight, connecting two points, allowing us to be level and aligned.

When it comes to loving one another, God knows we need every tool we can get!

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As you do all this, you know what time it is. The hour has already come for you to wake up from your sleep. Now our salvation is nearer than when we first had faith. The night is almost over, and the day is near. So let’s get rid of the actions that belong to the darkness and put on the weapons of light. Let’s behave appropriately as people who live in the day, not in partying and getting drunk, not in sleeping around and obscene behavior, not in fighting and obsession. Instead, dress yourself with the Lord Jesus Christ, and don’t plan to indulge your selfish desires.

Romans 13:11-14

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"It's time for you to wake from sleep.” Are you a morning person? The bio-rhythms of a teenager require a lot of sleep. But what Paul writes about here isn’t a literal sleeping and waking schedule. He’s saying it’s time for us to wake up and live like it matters – not to waste our days with things that drain our energy: partying, numbing out, mindless screen scrolling, picking fights with others, and wishing for what we don’t have. Not selfishly experimenting with our own and others’ bodies. These aren't the things that lead to life.

When’s the last time you felt truly alive, radiant with the possibilities of what lies in you and beyond? Putting on the Lord Jesus Christ means tuning in to that feeling of light and waking up to the beautiful potential that is your life.

And when we tune in to what really leads to life, we are also a better friend, family member, teammate, and coworker.

Cari Pattison

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God, grant me the courage to live a counter-cultural life. Wake me up to how you can use me in the world, to make it more like your kingdom come, on earth as in heaven. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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Being human together can be hard.
Be gentle with yourself.
Be generous to others.

Love might require effort.
It might mean saying “no.”
It might include “I’m sorry,”
or “I don’t know.”

And when it comes down to it, loving your neighbor as yourself simply means paying attention to what you feel and need and offering the same to another person.

Go in love,
and God be with you.

Cari Pattison

Cari Pattison is a Presbyterian (PC USA) pastor, soon to start a new ministry call in the Mid-Hudson Valley region (NY). She spent the past year thru-hiking two-thirds of the Appalachian Trail and learning a lot about gear, birdcalls, and broken ankles. Originally from Kansas City, she loves both the flatland prairies of the Great Plains and the rolling mountains of the Northeast, and loves how Jesus comes to find you no matter where you go.

It Is Well With My Soul


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