Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – July 31, 2015
Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Romans 12:10
Some people bring out the worst in me. If they are insecure—I feel insecure. If they expect perfection—I feel disapproval. If they are demanding—I feel guilty, even manipulated. But there are others like my friends Bill, Andy and Josh who bring out the best in me. If I am tired they give me energy. If I am discouraged they affirm who I am in Christ. If I forget the awe of God they remind me of His awesomeness. Yes, those who elevate my faith help me rise above my fears. Love believes the best. Here are four ways we can help bring out the best in someone else:
Strengthen Their Strengths
When we strengthen believers we strengthen ourselves. As followers of Christ, we are the body of Christ. So, to support one part of the body brings health to the whole body. For example, a person gifted in exhortation needs encouragement. A merciful person desires compassion. We strengthen another soul when we treat them how they prefer to be treated. Therefore, assess the giftedness of family, friends and co-workers. Strengthen their strengths with words and deeds.
“So in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others” (Romans 12:5).
Forgive Their Weaknesses
People regularly disappoint. They show up late to a meeting. They back out of a commitment. They are dishonest. They are not thorough. They overcommit. They are ungrateful. They forget. They are insensitive. So, how will we respond to another’s weaknesses? Forgiveness doesn’t mean we enable bad behavior. We can still kindly discuss their character flaws. Love lets go of resentment and offers another chance. We forgive. We allow sinners like us to rebuild our trust.
“Get Mark and bring him with you, because he is helpful to me in my [Paul’s] ministry” (2 Timothy 4:11).
Serve Them Selflessly
Service shows we care. When we cook a meal, clear the table or clean the car we free another to engage in something they enjoy. A servant spirit does not wait to be told what to do—instead we look for opportunities to meet a need. We give a gift. We network colleagues. We mow a neighbor’s lawn. We sit with a sick friend. Indeed, the person served feels valued, appreciated, and loved. Service is contagious, as the one being served desires to pass on the blessing to others.
“Do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love” (Galatians 5:13).
Pray for Their Heart
When a person knows we pray for their heart—they know we love them from the heart. We pray for their heart to be joyful in the hope they see in Jesus. We pray for their heart to be guarded by the incomprehensible peace found in Christ. We pray for their heart to understand and experience the riches of God’s grace and love. We pray for their heart to be led by the Holy Spirit. Heartfelt prayer for other hearts brings out their best for the Lord. Thus, pray for humble hearts in Christ!
“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe” (Ephesians 1:18-19).
Prayer: Heavenly Father, show me how to bring out the best in those I encounter in life.
Related Readings: 1 Corinthians 4:2; Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 1:9-12; 1 Peter 4:10
Post/Tweet this today: Those who elevate my faith help me rise above my fears. Love believes the best. #thebest #wisdomhunters
Additional Resource: 10 minute music video- Hillsong: I Surrender
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