Summary of passage: Bless your enemies. Be happy with others and sad with others. Be humble and mindful of others.
9) Part personal Question. My answer: Pray for them. Forgive them. Treat them with kindness and compassion–as you would anyone else. Keep in mind there are different levels of persecution which simply means hostility and ill-treatment of others especially because of religious or political beliefs. Basically, you don’t have to be stoned to be persecuted. This is a hard question because I can’t think of anyone who is persecuting me right now. People probably don’t like me, but it doesn’t affect me daily.
10) Part personal Question. My answer: Basically, care about what others are going through and be there for them. Get along with others. Put your needs aside. Be humble. Every day I have opportunities to do this. From being courteous to strangers at the grocery store and letting drivers in on the highways. Every interaction with another person is an opportunity to put yourself aside and do for them.
11) Part personal Question. My answer: Pride by its nature is all about you and selfish. You take the credit for your accomplishments and sometimes throw it in others’ faces. None of us does anything on our own. You can destroy another person by taking all the credit. Being the bigger person, saying sorry first, acting like Jesus will restore relationships.
12) Personal Question. My answer: I haven’t lost anyone close to me besides my dogs. It’s comforting just to be the shoulder to cry on.
Conclusions: All personal again. Paul’s words echo the previous verses. Again, put others first. It will change this world.
End Notes: We are not to hate anyone, even our persecutors. Matthew 5:46: For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? Persecution can be from inside the church as well. Jesus told us the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service (John 16:2). Inquisition anyone? Holocaust?
Be considerate of the feelings of others instead of waiting on them to be considerate towards you.
Conceited here is pride again. Other translations say “Do not be wise in your own opinion”, which is thinking you are always right. Again, reminders from Paul to step outside of ourselves and see others before ourselves.