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Showing posts from July 2, 2017

Listening

Listening  Our country is filled with people who have blocked ears. They will not listen to others who disagree because of their prejudices and refuse to believe that anything another says is true. This is a sad state, a polarized state, a pride-filled state. Listening is key to gaining trust and respect and to correctly addressing the other person's statements and questions. Listening is actively engaging with another person in a conversation. It involves eye contact, focused hearing, and setting aside any personal agenda for the moment to gather in all you can about that person's feelings and position. People who don't listen are those who remain quiet while a person speaks but are all this time forming their rebuttal so they can vomit it up on them. It involves pride of position and even sometimes interrupting a person before they are done. They are impatient, unjust and making themselves out to be fools. Solomon was a listener. Once two women came to him with their differ…

Great Celebration

July 4th is tomorrow and throughout America we will be celebrating the birth of our nation. Every city will have fireworks displays and millions of dollars will be spent on every manner of fireworks for individuals. I'm sure you have been there and done that. There will be food and drink, laughter and joy, and by some, even prayers of thanksgiving. Consider this statement found near the end of 2 Kings, "There had not been a Passover celebration like that since the time when the judges ruled in Israel, nor throughout all the years of the kings of Israel and Judah. The Passover celebrated the departure of Israel from Egypt, slavery and began the promise of their nation to come. This Passover was celebrated to the Lord in Jerusalem in the eighteenth year of King Josiah's reign." (2 Kings 23:22-23) The time mentioned above was 759 years from the beginning of the Judges period started in 1382 B.C. to Josiah's eighteenth year as ruler over Judah which was 623 B.C. The …

Philip

Who is it that steps forward in your church to assist the pastors in their work? It is capable and devoted laymen and laywomen. They are not initially called to speak the Word of truth but certainly they are living it out. There is a great example in the life of Philip who was chosen by the church as one of seven who were put in charge of the program to feed the hungry. It was said of these, including Philip, that they were "well respected and…full of the Spirit and wisdom." (Acts 6:3) And so, were given responsibility over the food program. This was done to relieve the Apostles of this duty and keep them focused on teaching, and to resolve the troubling problem in food distribution of seeming discrimination against the Greek-speaking believers. All was done for the unity of the body and that was a good thing. Stephen was the most prominent of these seven and Acts 6:7-8:60 tells the story of his steadfastness when accused by unbelievers of departing from Judaism. He made a str…