Tag Archives: respect

Not Just Thoughts but Faces

I am eager to see what You have in store for me today, Father, both in our time here this morning and throughout the events of this day! Enable me to hear Your voice and to act upon Your direction. It’s exhilarating to realize that You choose to use me! Thank You for the privilege.

1 Thessalonians 5:12-13 (<<click here)

Lord, there is much in these last few paragraphs of 1 Thessalonians and I don’t want to miss any of it! In these two verses, Paul speaks of honoring our leaders in the Lord’s work. I feel the people I serve do so but I also strive to honor the other leaders of my churches as well. I am definitely not in it for the money but I am compensated well enough. The other leaders of my churches are volunteers. I respect them, I cherish their input. I look forward to worshipping with them each week and for the most part even enjoy our time together even when we must conduct the “business” of the church.

I work to live out my relationship with You, Lord, before them. I learn from You each and every day and want to pass that learning on but their lives teach me as well. My leaders pull weeds and scrub pews – servant leadership is a lifestyle for many. I watch as they struggle with difficult situations of aging parents and wayward children – yet their faith holds. I see them valiantly fight against cancer and remain strong though death pulls loved ones from their arms.

Lord, as each of these examples goes on paper, they are not just passing thoughts. Each one has at least one face that fills my mind’s eye – sometimes there are several faces. These scenarios involve those who are still with me today but I can think of many others that involved those who are no longer with me but with You.

Your faithful followers continue to build Your church and all of them deserve to be honored and respected. I do my part but most assuredly I have not and cannot do it alone. Lord, give us Your direction and fill us with Your love to carry on. Amen.

July 29th, 2015, Wed, 7:06 am

Silencing the Mudslingers

Good morning, Father! May this be a productive morning. Enable me to benefit from our time together – may I be challenged. Help me to grow. Expand my mind in the ways of the kingdom. May I live out the lessons I learn. Amen!

1 Peter 2:15-17 (<<click here)

Reading through this passage, Lord, and pondering on it brings something You said to mind.

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.” Matthew 5:14

As Your followers, Lord, we are not to slink about in the shadows but we are to shine brightly wherever we are so that others can clearly see – both see us and because we are to reflect You in all we are, they will see You as well.

So as Peter states, “It is Your will that [we live] honorable lives…” Our lives should be so in line with Yours – respecting everyone, loving our fellow believers – that even when people sling mud at us it won’t stick and the mudslingers will be silenced. If we are truly living out your calling in our lives, our lights will shine through it all. My study Bible* has a great thought.

“Because God gives us freedom from religious rules and eternal guilt…we should reach for the best God has for us. Let [our] freedom sing of power, joy, and love – accountable to God, devoted to others.”

Lord, May my light shine brightly for You. Help me to live it out so that others are drawn to You, not pushed away. Amen

*New Living Translation Life Application Bible

Dec 10th, Sat, 6:24 am

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Father, what a day this has been. A rough start most assuredly but with Your intervention things fell under Your direction and here I sit having worked through a portion of Sunday’s message and feeling that I need to spend some time – just me and You. Bless our time together, Father – may it be pleasing in Your sight. Amen.

1 Peter 2:13-14 (<<click here)

Lord, Paul addressed this in Titus 3 and I wrote about it way back in February of this year and though the political horizon is on the verge of change, many still struggle with what this verse is conveying. Your word states explicably, “For [Your] sake, respect all human authority…”

No matter who is (or who is going to be) in charge, someone is not going to like it. It seems that in today’s society it is almost a dead draw. In the last several elections, races have been tight – very close to 50/50. And cries have risen from both sides. Who is right and who is wrong? I truly believe that everyone must shoulder portions of both.

But where we all err is the fact that we, as a whole, do not “respect all human authority.” And, Lord, I am right in the middle of it all. I have said many unkind things. I have had many disturbing thoughts. I have grimaced more times that I would care to remember upon seeing individuals of authority speaking or even just media shots of them walking for that matter – shameful!

Lord, wherever I may be, in whatever circumstance I find myself, be it local or global, may I follow your command to R-E-S-P-E-C-T all human authority.” Because when we really get down to it, You, Lord, are the ultimate authority. Absolutely no one outranks the Creator of the universe. You have allowed every authority to be where they are good and bad. And each fulfills your purpose, no matter how ugly it may get. We do not know all your ways. We are only called to respect – You first and foremost, and then others, as well.

Dec 8th, Thurs, 8:48 pm

Consistent Practice

In the quiet of this morning hour, Father, may I hear You speak to me. May Your words resonate with my soul and may they be branded upon my heart to carry with me for the rest of my life.

Titus 2:1-2 (<<click here)

Lord, I may be leaning a bit more into the “older men” category of which Paul speaks but these are all traits that everyone should be emulating, “self-control…worthy of respect…live wisely…sound faith…filled with love and patience.” v2

As my study Bible* alludes to this “whole teaching” leads us to combine “correct knowledge and understanding with consistent practice.” Your Word, Lord, should be our source of “correct knowledge” and time spent with You in contemplating Your Word will bring “understanding.” Consistently practicing doing these things will greatly impact us and the world around us.

Why are we so reluctant to invest energy and effort into reading our Bibles and talking with You, Lord? I realize that some things in life cannot be avoided – work, family, home, etc. but all of us have a certain amount of time to do with as we wish. And we fill that time with all kinds of things – some more honorable than others. If we want a relationship to grow, we invest in it. If we want our relationship with You to grow it is no different. When we do so the results are innumerable! Our lives are changed for the better – they’re literally impacted eternally! AND we impact others! Paul’s list of characteristics for “older men” are things that can bear a wonderfully positive influence on others both in this life and in our lives beyond this time on earth!

Lord, continue to draw me to Your side – more and more may it become a passion of mine!

Jan 23rd, Sat, 7:18 am

*New Living Translation Life Application Study Bible

I Do What I Want!

I’m having some difficulties this morning, Father, and would ask for Your help. Due to some issues with my glasses my eyes have been strained. They are achy and it is a challenge even to write without my glasses. Please touch my eyes and enable me to get my glasses adjusted. May my time with You be profitable this morning, regardless.

2 Timothy 3:2b (<<click here)

“…boastful and proud, scoffing at God…”

What this communicates to me, Lord, is not so much the idea that we stand defiantly against you in our pride and arrogance but more the idea that we are full of ourselves and think that You are not even worthy of our attention

In the last few days, as I’ve read over this passage, the phrase “disobedient to their parents” has stuck out. I realize that it’s wrong but it seems rather mundane in comparison to “scoffing at God” but when it is put together with “ungrateful” and considering “nothing sacred” it all fits together.

It all begins on the home front. It is foundational that we bring up our children in the “nurture and admonition of the Lord” Ephesians 6:4 KJV. Nurture equals discipline and admonition means a warning of behavior or being open to instruction. This is a very complicated issue but it boils down to the fact that we don’t like being told what to do and that attitude has been passed right along to our children, some even going so far as to feeling it is wrong to make children obey or do things the way we think they should for fear that it may harm or stifle them in some way. But nothing could be farther from the truth. Out of our fear of discipline has come a generation (multiple ones now) of individuals who respect no authority whatsoever – much less You, Lord…and our world is crumbling around us because of it.

Everyone does what they want, when and how they want with relatively few restraints – what a mess! Lord, begin with me – continue to guide and direct me, wash me, instruct me so that I may stand in the strength and wisdom only You can provide and then help me to proclaim You and that mindset to those around me.

Nov 23rd, Mon, 5:35 am