“A patient man has great understanding, but a quick-tempered man displays folly. A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones. He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.” (Proverbs 14:29–31)
Beloved, character traits affect our physical health as well as our relationships with God and man. Quick temper, envy, and oppression are foolish traits to cultivate.
Patience is the opposite of quick temper. Peaceful hearts do not envy others, and kindness leaves no room for envy.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, our loving response to persons in need pleases and honors God because He has shown Himself to be a God of grace and love, greatly concerned for persons who are needy and in distress. We pray this day for You to put in our pathways, those in any kind of need or distress, and that we might reach out to them to help ease their pain and/or distress. Let this be our way of praising You for showing us those that could us a hand up, and not just a hand out. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“When we are in deep water —- Trust the ONE who walked on it.”
“The sinners in Zion are terrified; trembling grips the godless: ‘Who of us can dwell with the consuming fire? Who of us can dwell with everlasting burning?’ He who walks righteously and speaks what is right, who rejects gain from extortion and keeps his hand from accepting bribes, who stops his sears against plots of murder and shuts his eyes against contemplating evil—-this is the man who will dwell on the heights, whose refuge will be the mountain fortress. His bread will be supplied, and water will not fail him.” (Isaiah33:14–16)
The righteous person who wants to participate in God’s final salvation will not cheat the poor, try to bribe the court systems to avoid justice, hurt innocent people, or e involved in evil plots or activities. Righteous people avoid all appearances of evil.
In short, this type of person is an ethical Christian, who considers character in his dealings with all people just as important with the downtrodden and with a rich person.
“My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.” (James 1:19–21)
Beloved, it is not enough to know or even choose the right act; it must be done. Intellectual assent to God’s law is possible without practicing it. This assent gives the person a false sense of faithfulness. God does not seek righteous knowledge; He seeks righteous lives.
Losing control affect our whole being. Gaining control of one’s anger can provide a key to the maturing expression of more positive virtues in one’s character.
SECOND THOUGHT of the DAY:
“Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take p his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel message will save it. What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul? Or what can a man give in exchanged for his soul? If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.’” (Mark 8:34–38)
The Christian life is to be keynoted as a life of surrender. To deny oneself is not a call to a colorless life; rather, it is a call to deny the baser nature and pursue the higher levels of ethical standards to which Jesus points. This paradox of finding life by losing it is open to the test of experience. Mature Christians attest to its validity.
Sin at its deepest level is really unbelief in Jesus Christ. Total trust and commitment to Jesus leads us to seek to live the perfect life Jesus led. Our society makes such commitment difficult, for ours is a sinful generation committed to many things and causes opposed to God and godliness. Society makes us feel shame and embarrassment because of our Christian commitment. Beloved, Christ calls us to witness to that commitment wherever we go and whomever we are with. Failure to witness grows out of shame and fear when faced by society standards. Failure to witness reflects unbelief and a lac of commitment on our par, and that is sin.