Friday, February 5, 2010

With No View to Their Good

And be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:32 NAS
I have mentioned that I am doing the Bible study Lord, Change My Attitude. It is excellent and I can’t recommend it highly enough. Every week that I am in the study and memorizing key Scriptures I find ample opportunity to put what I am learning into shoe leather.

Here is this week’s challenge to determine if we are a critical person. Criticism: To dwell on the perceived faults of another with no view to their good. If we dwell on someone’s faults after a while we have a hard time appreciating what is good about them don’t we? What if it is my perception that’s off base? Hmmm, good questions. That is why it is so necessary to pay attention to what is going on in our relationships. If something seems amiss, don’t dwell on it until it becomes a problem. Take it to prayer. Ask the Lord to show you if it is your perception that is off or is there truly a problem? As Joyce Meyer is fond of saying, "We often look at ourselves through rose colored glasses and at others with a magnifying glass."

What do we do when we see or experience something in another that is truly a fault? If we are a critical person we will point our finger, judge them, maybe confront in an unhelpful way or talk behind their back. We really have no view to their good guiding us. If we are genuinely concerned then we will pray over them and what we see. We will ask God to help and to open their eyes. It may be totally appropriate to go to the person and lovingly express your concern directly to them. Galations 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
I find myself placed squarely in this challenge right now. I am not going to dwell, I am going to pray and ask the Lord to help me discern if my perceptions are incorrect. I truly hope they are. If my perceptions are correct, I am going to pray over the place of barrenness with a view to their good and God’s glory. If at some point the Lord wants me to speak, then by His grace and for their good I will.

“Any hack can tear down; it takes a real artist to build up.” Can I get an amen?

MY PRAYER: Jesus, you are the ultimate artist. You are at work by your Spirit in us to conform us to your image. Help us to treat others the way we would want to be treated.

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