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Adding to Our Faith

October 2014
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The Gospel of John

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Igniting faith“God knows how to deal with all types of people” (quote from reblogged post below from The Daily Way). In our fast paced society where kindness and courtesy seems to be going the way of the dinosaur (except, perhaps, on a superficial level), relationships can and often do become sticky, especially with strangers in our midst. Hebrews 3:2-3 reminds us of the following: “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it. Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.”

In order to develop Christ-like characteristics in our own lives, we need to begin to view others as God views them (quote from post below). If we say we have faith, our actions must prove that out (see Hebrews 11). And as 2 Peter 1:5-7 states, we need to “Make every effort to add to your faith, goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.”

Living in a society where so much excess is available we tend to put “self-control” on the back burner. Yet without it we become self-serving and myopic, caring more about ourselves and “what’s in it for us” then we care about others, especially strangers in our midst and those we don’t particularly like. The excesses is our culture have gone unchecked over the past several decades and we now live with an “anything goes” mentality. This is anathema to living with the Christ-like characteristics that help us to view others as better then ourselves (see Philippians 2:3); that look for the good in others and not just for the gossip; that gives and not just takes (as in greed); that genuinely loves and does not envy or is not jealous of others (see I Corinthians 13).

The apostle Peter prefaced the verses in 2 Peter 1:5-7 as follows (2 Peter 1:1-8):

“Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,

“To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours:

“Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.

“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

“For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Notice that last verse (8): “For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Our faith is precious. Let’s use it wisely in our dealings with others, and that includes all others (even those we love to hate).

YouTube Video: What Faith Can Do by Kutless (click link for video).

Photo credit here

The Daily Way

Can you imagine a group of carpenters gathering to build a skyscraper without architectural blueprints? The results would be horrendous! Have you ever heard of a medical student failing his medical exams numerous times and still having a successful career as a physician? This would be impossible!

You would never trust your health to someone who has not passed his medical exams, and you would never live in a home that was built without a plan. Just as we need structure for buildings, we also need structure in our relationships.

On any level, this can prove to be challenging. Whether dealing with a spouse, sibling, parent, child, co-worker, boss, or friend, the key to building solid relationships is learning how to interact successfully with one another.

When it comes to the subject of relationships, what is your greatest fear? Rejection? Or do you struggle with the thought of not meeting…

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