10 / 09 / 16
Over the last few weeks I have been involved in moving things out of my parent’s house now that they have a new home in Heaven. Many things have brought back special memories and many things are totally worn out and needed to be discarded. What do you value in life? King Solomon said, “The tongue of the righteous is choice silver, but the heart of the wicked is of little value.” (Proverbs 10:20) Are you known for having a tongue of the righteous? Our lesson today will encourage us to discover God’s gifts that have eternal value.
One of the most important components of the Christian life is the way we communicate with one another. Paul told us, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (Ephesians 4:29) Our words can be powerful tools of encouragement and hope or, if thoughtlessly delivered, weapons of emotional devastation and instruments of discouragement. Many of us may need help in this area of life. We should be loving people and helping them through the struggles because the struggles are real and many, but often times we are of no help at all and our communication has no value at all.
How do others see you?
Do you have room to be more loving?
Do you have room to be a lot more encouraging?
Why not guard your tongue and be careful how you relate to others!
Many people feel there is no hope in their lives. Few people truly understand the depth of shame and guilt of the woman at the well who met Jesus that day. (John 4: 7-39) More than likely she was the focus of local gossip and malicious accusations. No one took the time to look into her heart – no one, that is, until Jesus came on the scene. Instead of rejection, Christ’s words brought hope and forgiveness. The result was a changed life. Many of the people we meet and pass each day need to hear of God’s love and eternal forgiveness. Rather, they are often met with disapproving stares and whispers. It is any wonder that our churches are not full because of the lack of understanding of things that have eternal value.
Who do you know that needs some hope today?
How can you share love and hope with that person?
What are some of the ways that we can lift up someone’s spirit this week?
Those trapped in sin already know the reality of their shame. What they really need is a way out of the mess they are in. Do as Jesus did. Accept them as people dearly loved by God while refusing to justify their sin. Let your words be gifts of eternal value instead of arsenals of pain. The woman at the well had nothing of eternal value until she met Christ. The woman taken in adultery that should have been stoned did not have a foot to stand on and no hope at all until she met Jesus. (John 8:1-11) Matthew the tax collector had a lot of money but nothing of value until he met Jesus and accepted the call to become one of His disciples. (Mark 2:13-14) Saul had a lot of religious knowledge and a hatred for Christians until he met Jesus and was transformed into the Apostle Paul. (Acts 9) Cliff Lazenby had nothing good to say and nothing good to share until he met Jesus, and Jesus changed his life forever!