“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere” (James 3:17 NIV).
Do you jump on people every time they make a blunder? Do you ever let people go, or do you keep hounding them about their mistakes? Do you hold them in leverage, even when they have asked for forgiveness?
Long-lost friends met at a convention and sat in the lobby all night talking. They knew they would be in trouble with their spouses, who were waiting back in their rooms When they saw each other the next day, one of the friends said, “I walked in the door last night, and my spouse got historical.” “Don’t you mean hysterical?” the other one asked. “No, historical,” the friend replied. “I was told everything I ever did wrong.”
Wise people don’t emphasize other people’s mistakes. The Bible says that wisdom is “full of mercy and good fruit.” It also says in Proverbs 17:9, “Love forgets mistakes; nagging about them parts the best of friends” (TLB). If you’re wise, you don’t rub it in. You let it go! This is what it means to have mercy: You give people what they need, not what they deserve. You don’t hold it over their heads. You don’t emphasize the mistake. You don’t judge them. You encourage them.
“Good fruit” means kind actions. You don’t just show sympathy. You don’t just say, “I feel for you.” You do something about it. You take action. You are a doer of the Word.
Mercy is always a better choice than judgment, because it shows you understand wisdom that comes from heaven.
BE WILLING to go out on a limb with Me. If that is where I am leading you, it is the safest place to be. Your desire to live a risk-free life is a form of unbelief. Your longing to live close to Me is at odds with your attempts to minimize risk. You are approaching a crossroads in your journey. In order to follow Me wholeheartedly, you must relinquish your tendency to play it safe. Let Me lead you step by step through this day. If your primary focus is on Me, you can walk along perilous paths without being afraid. Eventually, you will learn to relax and enjoy the adventure of our journey together. As long as you stay close to Me, My sovereign Presence protects you wherever you go.
Even though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
PSALM 23 : 4
Those who know your name will trust in you,
for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.
PSALM 9 : 10
Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.
JOHN 12 : 26
He Who Laughs, Lasts
As I’ve mentioned in these devotionals, many people think the Bible is only filled with commands labeled “Thou shalt not”. They assume the Bible is all about restrictions and making you lead a boring life.
But this should put a smile on your face: Having fun is good for your health.
God tells us in his Word that life is meant to be enjoyed, not just endured. “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” (Proverbs 17:22 NIV)
I like to put it this way, “He who laughs, lasts.” Learn to laugh at yourself, put some play in every day, relax, chill out, have some fun.