And in times and places where there was not much persecution, people could become and continue Christians who neither were nor professed to be very devoted persons.
How will be behave when we are the persecuted? Will we fade into the background or stand up and be counted? Many of us are living in easy times and have not been tested. What will you do?
“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1
My father always told me to not respond in anger to someone who is angry. Good advice but not so easy to follow. When someone is yelling at me about something it is very hard to keep my cool. I can feel my heart racing and my mind gearing up for battle. I’m ready to yell back. Yet very little is solved in anger. Most problems are resolved when everyone calms down.
Prayer: Gentle Jesus, help us to think of you and respond lovingly to someone who is angry. Amen
Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant. Robert Louis Stevenson
A lot of times I hear people say: “I prayed for my friend and nothing happened.” “I tried to talk to someone about God but it didn’t change anything.” That may be what we see but we may never know the final result. It is amazing years later to have someone say: “you helped me when I was down.” We need to keep on spreading those seeds.
Prayer: Loving Jesus, you know that we have become self conscious talking about you to others. We feel uncomfortable and usually can’t see any result. Remind us to spread the seed and let you do the rest. Amen
In California everyone goes to a therapist, is a therapist, or is a therapist going to a therapist. —–——Truman Capote
It seems in earlier generations we needed less therapists. Some might say it was because less people were diagnosed. I have a different idea. Many of us lived in small towns and had more people to talk our problems over with. I think we also depended more on God than on science. We shouldn’t discard the science but more time spent with God may solve some of the things that confront us. God is always there…waiting on us…ready to listen…ready to help. Spend more time with God.
Loving God, you are the perfect listener for our troubles. AMEN
Praying shapes believing.-—————— Lionel L. Mitchell
Praying not only shapes believing but it also enhances it. The more time we spend in prayer the closer we become with God. Too often we think that prayer time has to be planned and formed. This is so wrong. Prayer can be just a moment where we want to thank God or tell him something….just like speaking to a friend. Rmember God is always there and hears us.
Nurturing God, you hear our every thought and prayer. Help us to tell you our thoughts at any moment. When we pray you hear. AMEN
Pretty much all the honest truthtelling there is in the world is done by children.——Anon
Children do tell the truth. Sometimes a truth we would rather they didn’t tell. But we are called to be as children in the presence of God. God wants us to come to him wide open with no doors closed. God wants the truth…the truth about us. God wants us to share with Him and let him know our fears, our sins, and our joys. Share with God. Be as children. He will understand.
Loving God, help us to share all that we are with you. AMEN
Hate is not the opposite of love; apathy is. –———-Rollo May
Apathy is a dangerous thing. It can lead us to do nothing and see a Hitler arise. We have to speak out against evil. We cannot ignore it. We cannot wait for someone else to take care of it. We must speak.
Jesus never sat back. He always spoke out.
Gracious Lord, help us to have the strength to speak up against evil. Help us to not be afraid. AMEN
It is so easy to remain silent. Too often we are with people that we like a someone says something that we violently disagree with. It is much easier to remain silent than to cause an upheaval. But silence can be damning. It reflects back onto us. There are times when we must speak up. If we don’t nip the evil ideas in the bud they grow to proportions that we cannot stop. Speak up!
Great Lord, you expect us to counter evil and stop it before it grows. Help us have the courage to do so. AMEN
No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments. ——————-Holy Bible 1 Timothy 5:23
See! The Bible tells us that it is ok to drink wine. I’m sure that Timothy means for us to do this in moderation. There are many things in the Bible that we can read as rules. Some think that drinking alcohol is wrong. If it is for them then they should abstain. The important thing to remember is that we can never be good enough to follow God on our own. Following rules will not work. It is not a bad thing to do but it will not save us. We are called to follow the path of Jesus the very best we can. We need to continue to try…always.
Loving God, we can’t reach you by following rules. Help us to follow Jesus instead. AMEN
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
We are not called to sit at home and read the Bible. We are called to go out and tell about Christ. Sometimes the best way to do that is in our behavior. If our love for others makes someone ask why we act that way then we are doing the right thing.