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Archive for the ‘kindness’ Category

You can give life to somebody today.

Perhaps even several people.

It’s all in how you speak to them.

“Gentle words are a tree of life; a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit.” (Proverbs 15:4)

It’s easy to speak gently to one who pleases us or at least doesn’t disappoint us.

But when somebody doesn’t do or say what we like, the temptation comes along for us to punish the person with our tongues.

Let’s not give Satan what he wants.

After all, he’s in the business of stealing, killing and destroying, according to Jesus (John 10:10).

We all know from personal experience that words can kill the spirit or dreams or relationships.

Let’s give others what they need and what God wants — let’s speak gentle words to them.

It’s how Jesus spoke during His ministry.

It’s how we are to speak during ours.

As always, I love you
Martin

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It’s so nice to be around people who are so nice.

The alternative is not what anybody wants to experience.

That’s why I encourage you to think often today about how Jesus interacted with people.

He was always caring, always honest, always kind, always humble, always looking for how to help others and His words never tore people down.

He was the textbook friend.

When He spoke, life-affirming words flowed.

Let’s each pray for conformity to His example.

Let’s make sure that Jesus is Lord over ALL of our heart, not just the “church” part.

For how we speak to others is a direct reflection of the place Jesus has in our hearts.

Jesus said so.

“What you say flows from what is in your heart.” (Luke 6:45)

I love the people God has placed in my life and into my heart.

I just have to make more room in my heart for the words of Christ so that whatever I say to them will be caring, honest, kind, humble, helpful and encouraging.

I pray that you do the same because the world needs more textbook friends.

As always, I love you
Martin

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Here are five reasons to be kind.

And they’re certain in yielding benefits to both beneficiary and benefactor.

You see, God promised.

“Oh, the joys of those who are kind to the poor!

The Lord rescues them when they are in trouble.

The Lord protects them and keeps them alive.

He gives them prosperity in the land and rescues them from their enemies.

The Lord nurses them when they are sick and restores them to health.”

These words from Psalm 41:1-3 are wonderfully encouraging.

Five blessings for those who give blessings to those who struggle financially.

Let’s be kind to the poor.

It pleases our Abba Father who will be more inclined to help us during our times of need.

If you’re not sure how to begin showing this sort of kindness, ask your pastor for ideas or at least keep a bag of easily-eaten, preserved food in your car to give to a homeless person if you see one.

As always, I love you
Martin

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I love reading Bible passages that encourage my faith.

That’s why I loved reading Romans 14:17-19 this morning during my devotional time.

The larger context involved the Apostle Paul’s teaching to the church at Rome regarding the topic of foods. Some recent converts were accustomed to eating certain foods while converts from other religious backgrounds saw those same foods as offensive.

Because Paul knew that we humans tend to choke on cultural gnats and yet swallow horse pills of divisiveness, he issued this call for focusing on what pleases God and builds the Church:

For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. If you serve Christ with this attitude, you will please God, and others will approve of you, too. So then, let us aim for harmony in the church and try to build each other up.” (NLT)

It’s unlikely that your church is about to split over food choices among members. But wherever there are believers, there will be the Deceiver. And he will do all he can to find something that people will fuss over, perhaps to the point of choosing sides.

It’s just what he does.

Let’s remember that the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we __________ or ___________, but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

If we serve Christ with this attitude, we will please God, and others will approve of our efforts, too.

So then, let us aim for harmony in the church and try to build each other up.

Even when it means keeping our personal preferences for music styles or clothing styles or hairstyles or worship style from grabbing the microphone or steering wheel of our lives and running others off the road to heaven.

Please God. Build each other up.

That pretty much sums everything up, doesn’t it?

As always, I love you
Marton

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I’m glad that being a genius is not a requirement for being faithful.

I’d be in big trouble if that were the case.

I’m alot of things, but genius isn’t one of them.

Some things I understand and can even have innovative ideas from time to time.

But in other areas, my comprehension and competency falls short of where I’m sure God wants them to be.

Because of my imperfections, I am quite grateful for scriptures that point me in the direction of becoming more holy.

Particularly those that are easy to understand.

Today’s reading from the One-Year Bible includes Psalm 145 and that segment lists a number of God’s characteristics that I should imitate:

The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The Lord is good to all; He has compassion on all He has made.” (vv. 8-9)

The Lord is trustworthy in all He promises and faithful in all He does. The Lord upholds all who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down.” (vv. 13-14)

The Lord is righteous in all His ways and faithful in all He does.” (v. 17)

Let’s review the above characteristics:

gracious

compassionate

slow to anger

rich in love

good to all

trustworthy in all promises

faithful in all that is done

upholds those who have fallen

lifts up those bent over with burdens

righteous in all ways

Wow. That’s quite a list.

Why wouldn’t we want to serve a God who perfectly demonstrates these 10 characteristics toward us and others?

And why wouldn’t we have godly influence in the lives of people who see us demonstrating these others-focused characteristics on a consistent basis?

You know, there are many people in your life or mine who are hungry for more examples of these behaviors. Why? Because so few people live up to this list… or even come close.

If you and I become better imitators of God, though, checking our lives daily to measure how we’re demonstrating the nature of God in serving others, we’ll have more evangelistic impact, I’m sure.

Remember, touching lives for the Gospel is not about impressing people with mental genius but instead about spiritual goodness.

As always, I love you
Martin

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We’ll all have some moments during this Christmas season when we’re feeling good about the love — and perhaps even gifts — that we’ve received from others.

We’ll feel our spirits lifted and our steps less heavy.

As we savor these blessings, let’s remember to share a bit of those blessings with others who aren’t experiencing the same favor.

In doing so, we’ll be more like our Lord.

Though the LORD is exalted, He looks kindly on the lowly, but He takes notice of the proud from afar.” (Psalm 138:6)

This verse from today’s Bible reading stirred my heart to consider how I might show kindness to the lowly. I’ve got some ideas that I’ll discuss with my wife Lori and just might implement on Christmas day for several homeless people that linger at road intersections between home and church.

I pray that you’ll do something this season to look kindly on the lowly.

As you do so, you’ll be serving as the Lord’s hands to look kindly on the lowly.

The world already has enough prideful, can’t-be-bothered people who drive the long away around intersections where homeless people abide.

As always, I love you
Martin

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You can provide finely crafted jewelry to several people today.

I’m talking about precious gifts that will provide lasting, cherished value to recipients.

In fact, God promises that your gifts will have great worth.

You’ll just need to make sure that you’re trying your best to craft your gifts in a way that reflects His goodness and infinite value.

A verse from today’s Bible reading in the One-Year Bible explains:

“A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver” (Proverbs 25:11).

This is quite a statement, of course. Some might claim that Solomon was over-reaching in his attribution of value to spoken wisdom.

But was he?

Are there times when just the right words can do more for the heart and soul than can the gift of a beautiful ring?

Of course there are.

When Solomon’s wisely spoken words resolved a child-custody dispute that nobody else could resolve, there’s no doubt that what he said was far more valuable to the actual mother than would have been a compensatory diamond ring.

And when a husband chooses to sincerely apologize and promise a new life of dedication to loving his family, are not those words far more valuable to a wife and children than are a new necklace and trip to Disneyworld?

Since we know that words can permeate into places of the soul that tangible things cannot, it’s no surprise that God associates great value with good words that reflect wisdom and kindness and loyalty.

There are plenty of people who spend money in an effort to speak to the heart of another. It’s so much better when we use words. It’s not that gifts are bad. In fact, we all like receiving them.

But never are tangible gifts to take the place of words aptly spoken.

For such words can nurture and strengthen the heart in ways that physical items cannot.

Pray for the Lord to stir and steer your heart today in the provision of aptly spoken words to people who need them.

If you need to apologize, please do so, making sure to promise a better way of making choices.

If your friend needs an abundance of encouragement, please offer it with a healthy dose of scripture.

If your co-worker is feeling insecure about his or her job, offer to pray with him or her for an infusion of patience and increased vocational aptitude.

You’ll perhaps help them in ways that they will treasure more than just another piece of jewelry.

As always, I love you
Martin

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