CLOTHED IN PATIENCE
Proverbs 19:11, 25:15; Ecclesiastes 7:8; Colossians 3:12
In Jesus’ Name, I Pray God’s Will for You
I pray that God will bless you with extraordinary patience. May you not be easily offended by those who affront you – remember that it is to your glory to overlook an offense. May you exercise self-control in discussions and arguments. May you constantly cultivate forbearance and remove pride from your heart. As God’s chosen, may you clothe yourself with patience.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
We can all learn a thing or two from who we spend time with. The question is whether the person we spend time with is making us a better person in turn. When we are around others we begin to see different viewpoints, attitudes, and behaviors. Over time, our minds embrace these thoughts which can make us either a healthier person or lead us down a foolish path. Are you walking with wise people who share their wisdom to you?
While Scripture places a value upon the ability of a person to act in an unconstrained or uncoerced way, it places a greater value upon the individual acting in accordance with the truth, in accordance with what is right. “Freedom” in Scripture is not the freedom that an amoral individual has to do what he wants to do; it is the service of God. It is this freedom, in contrast to the bondage to sin, that Christ promised to his followers (John 8:32-6). So however “free”—politically, financially or in other ways—a person may be, if his uncoerced choices are sinful then that person is not free but is in bondage.
The freedom of heaven, then, is the freedom from sin; not that the believer just happens to be free from sin, but that he is so constituted or reconstituted that he cannot sin. He does not want to sin, and he does not want to want to sin.
~ Paul Helm, [The Last Things]
WATCH YOUR WORDS DILIGENTLY
Words have such great power to bless or to wound. When you speak carelessly or negatively, you damage others as well as yourself. This ability to verbalize is an awesome privilege, granted only to those I created in My image. You need help in wielding this mighty power responsibly.
Though the world applauds quick-witted retorts, My instructions about communication are quite different: Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. Ask My Spirit to help you whenever you speak. I have trained you to pray—“Help me, Holy Spirit”—before answering the phone, and you have seen the benefits of this discipline. Simply apply the same discipline to communicating with people around you. If they are silent, pray before speaking to them. If they are talking, pray before responding. These are split-second prayers, but they put you in touch with My Presence. In this way, your speaking comes under the control of My Spirit. As positive speech patterns replace your negative ones, the increase in your Joy will amaze you.
PROVERBS 12:18; JAMES 1:19; EPHESIANS 4:29
The image of justice and kindness is such a powerful one! So often our world either leans towards one of these ideas at the expense of the other. People will push loudly for justice but fail to show compassion through their words and actions. Hence many heated online exchanges that turn ugly because our passion for truth and rightness begins to outweigh our willingness to show kindness. On the other hand we can prize kindness as our salvation against any culpability in our role perpetuating injustice in our society. We see ourselves as “kind to all” or a “good person” so we fail to recognize our passive participation in the brokenness of our world. God calls us to strive to marry these two ideas together! Show kindness and compassion for all while pursuing justice- this is God’s way.