YourCharacter

Be Cheerful in Tough Times

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Philippians 2:14-16 The Message (MSG)
Do everything readily and cheerfully—no bickering, no second-guessing allowed! Go out into the world uncorrupted, a breath of fresh air in this squalid and polluted society. Provide people with a glimpse of good living and of the living God. Carry the light-giving Message into the night so I’ll have good cause to be proud of you on the day that Christ returns. You’ll be living proof that I didn’t go to all this work for nothing.

If we cannot show the hope and peace of God to the people of this world, where else will they find it? Be cheerful in those tough times, even when you don’t feel like it! Pass on a smile to someone even when that’s the last thing you feel like doing. Let this world can see Christ through you while you are weathering a storm or while you are on a mountain top. If someone hears us do nothing but complain or argue, chances are they will not think too highly of our God. Let’s be the witnesses God wants us to be.

Have a blessed day.

YourCharacter

Think Before You Speak

A few days ago I read a devotional that referenced Ephesians 4:29 as the main scripture, but the scripture stuck out to me was:

James 1:26, “Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.” (NIV)

That was an “ouch” moment.

Besides me, how many of you have ever had conversations that you regretted afterwards? Come on be honest. Remember a moment where you were talking about somebody and all of a sudden they walked by or you left the room to see them standing right outside taking to someone else? Your heart flipped, your stomach sank and you felt about as high as the shortest flea alive? We feel that way because deep down we know it is wrong. Like the Bible says, if we can’t keep a tight reign on our tongues, then our religion is worthless. You know, idle words, gossip, etc. Even if no one else is around to hear what you are saying to the person you are talking to, remember God is right there beside you, maybe shaking His head in shame and hurt that His child, who is supposed to be an example of His love by the way, would do something like that.

What good does talking about someone else or being negative about everything do for us? Nothing. As a Christian, we are to be examples to others and what we do may cause someone else to stumble or to become stronger in Christ. What kind of example will you choose to be today, an encourager who builds others up, or a discourager who talks about others and emits negativity? Don’t forget there’s a lot of guilt and shame associated with the latter.

“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 (NIV)

The easiest way for us to remember to keep our mouths in check is to THINK before we speak, text, tweet, Facebook, etc:

Thinkbeforeyou

YourCharacter

“An Unexpected Witness”

CAPEWhen I worked in Connecticut, I would sometimes stop by a local D&D on my way to work for some nice freshly brewed iced tea.  I never thought anything about it, I just drove through, gave my order, paid and left.

One day, as usual, I was in my car wishing the line would move faster because I needed to get to work. I finally ordered and drove my car around. I wasn’t thinking about anything but not wanting to be late. When I finally got up to the window, the girl gave the total and took my money. When she gave me the ice tea, she looked at me and asked “Are you Pentecostal?” I was taken aback. She couldn’t really see much of my hair, I had it pulled back and flipped over a huge beret, so I knew she couldn’t see the length. I never got out of the car, so she could not see my skirt. We sat there with a line of cars on a busy morning and talked. She wanted to know if I knew a pastor in the next town over and I did. She had family that used to attend there and she and her fiancee were looking for a church. I gave her a our church information and my name and phone number to call me for a Bile Study. After I left, knowing I was going to be late but not caring too much at that point, I felt such a swelling in my heart. I knew that without thinking about it I had somehow acted Christ like enough for her to see who I was. Through those grumpy days, I still remembered to say “please” when I ordered and “thank you” when I paid. I would sometimes tell them to have a good day. Even when they got my order wrong, they would apologize and I would say, “No problem, that’s okay,” with a smile even when I was a little annoyed.

So, I was feeling pretty good about myself, when I left, but then it hit me…. I was being a witness without knowing it. I had no idea that those few just minutes a few times a week could have an impact on another person without me making any effort to do so. That thought scared me a little. A few minutes a day had such a big impact, what about when we are walking around a mall, or checking out in a grocery store? How about at work? These are places where we spend more time. I knew I had not been the witness I needed to be all the time. Now that I think about it, I’ve even talked to people at gas pumps and didn’t even think that I was being an unexpected witness.

When we don’t think about what we are doing, are we still showing Christ to the world? It should be that natural to us. No matter what our lives are like, people should always see Christ in us, after all we are all “unexpected witnesses.” I pray that I am still doing that and that I can continue to be that way forever!

Mattew 5:13 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 

YourCharacter

Thought for the Day

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Oh, that the Lord would let me see everything through new eyes so I could experience everything in a new light. To see things as though I am seeing them for the first time and realize the beauty and worth that many things hold, especially those things I take for granted. To find positive qualities in circumstances or people where I now only see negative. To see the wonder of love and joy in others. I long to see through Jesus’s eyes. 

How much would our lives change, if God gave us new eyes to see through? How much more would our lives change if we could see everything through Jesus’ eyes?

YourCharacter

Thought for the Day

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II Corinthians 4:7
7But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
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We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;
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Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;
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Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.
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For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh

With God we can handle anything, as long as we trust in Him and His love for us.