Life of Jesus
Wisdoms from the Holy BibleJanuary,1 2016
People listen to people who listen.
Far too often, many Christians view evangelism as a game involving "me," the Christian,vs. "you," the non-Christian. However, reaching unbelievers effectively usually requires working with them in order to develop a relationship based on trust, and any relationship requires listening to the other person in order to find out where they are spiritually and emotionally. When you authentically listen to others, they will genuinely listen to you.
In Romans 12:10, Paul writes, Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. To honor other people means respecting them, which includes listening to them. In fact, simply by listening attentively to someone you show that you care about that person: you place value on them.
Remember, people listen to people who listen.
Not every good idea is a God idea.
What God may tell your friend to do might be a terrible thing for you to do. For example, say you start doing something because someone else says it is a good idea, but you find it a struggle. In that case, you may be struggling because God hasn't given you the grace to do what your friend told you to do. In other words, just because other people tell you to do "good" things, doesn't necessarily mean you should.
Furthermore, if God instructs you to do something, be assured that His plan is better than any other plan you could have. For example, God's plan for Jonah was for him to "go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it" (Jonah 1:2). However, Jonah didn't like that, and so he came up with his own idea: Jonah ran away from the Lord and headed for Tarshish (Jonah 1:3). To Jonah, running away to Tarshish seemed like a much better plan than traveling to Nineveh. But it wasn't God's plan. And so Jonah's plan failed miserably as will any plan that is against God's plan. Jonah ended up in so much trouble as a result of his plan that he realized he should have followed God's plan in the first place (Jonah 3:1-3). In short, Jonah's "good" idea was anything but a God idea.
In your life today, don't do what sounds "good" to you; instead, do what God tells you to do. Stop following "good" plans and start following God's plans.
The Western Archdiocese of the Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch,
providing spiritual guidance and leadership to the Syriac Orthodox
community, is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit, tax-exempt organization
comprised of 18 churches and parishes in 17 western states. It was
established in 1952 as the Archdiocese of the Syrian Orthodox Church
encompassing the entire United States and Canada. In November 1995 by
the Holy Synod, the Western Archdiocese was formed to exclusively
serve the 17 states of the western half United States.
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