Very often we respond to others in ways we have been treated. When someone is kind to us we are more apt to be kind to others. If someone gets mad at us, we are likely to be in a poor mood and pass on anger to others. The truth is we reflect how we perceive we are being treated. In this parable the man who refused to forgive showed a greater lack than just financial poverty, he lacked pity.Read More
Naomi is not alone. There are times when we all wallow in bitterness so thoroughly that we are blind to God’s solution to our problems. We all suffer that sickness at some point.
In Naomi’s case, she has traveled all the way from Moab to her hometown, a journey estimated to take at least a week on foot. Yet, apparently, it never crossed her mind to ask a kinsman to redeem Ruth.Read More hope, redemption, kindness
We like making plans. We have expectations for the future. We have been created with this extraordinary capacity to think about the future. We plan our professional and our family lives. We make plans for travel, for holidays. Perhaps we also plan concrete ways in which to serve the Lord. That’s desirable.
If we’re seeking to live according to his wisdom (see v 20), we can be encouraged to expect that our plans will accomplish God’s will.Read More kindness, plans, God’s will
“Forgive me for asking.“ (7:2) We ask forgiveness for many things, but how often do we ask forgiveness for the questions we pose God? Does it sound stilted, rather formal; how you might speak to the Queen? What does it say about Amos? He is like Abraham with his plea for Sodom & Gomorrah: “May the Lord not be angry” even though “I am but dust and ashes” may I ask: “If there are just fifty… forty, thirty, twenty, ten” righteous people will you relent?Read More repentance, kindness, intimacy with God, all-powerful
I have to say, as a relatively new wife, this proverb has gained some significance for me of late. After all, no one wants to be so hard to live with that someone would prefer the roof if that means getting away from you.
Of course, this proverb isn’t just for wives.Read More kindness, provocation, nagging, cruel words
This is a great psalm! There’s a call to praise (vv 1-3), then four examples of how God helps and delivers his people (vv 4,10,17 and 23) and finally a beautiful summing-up (vv 33-43).
The lonely wanderers in vv 4-9 may look back to the wanderings of the people of Israel in the desert, after their escape from Egypt.Read More trouble, distress, rescue, love, kindness
Luke wrote the Gospel and the Acts with what Floyd V. Filson called “the journey motif.” In the Gospel, Jesus is journeying from Galilee to Jerusalem and in Acts the journey progresses from Jerusalem to Judea, Samaria and beyond (Acts 1:8). From Acts 19:21 through to the end of the book Paul is journeying from Jerusalem to Rome.Read More kindness, Journey to Rome
People who are in touch with the living God are not satisfied with things that blind us to godliness (pride and sensuality chief among them). Once we have a sense of our own frailty and mortality in the light of God’s perfection and saving grace, we will want to be more godlike. Spiritual growth is of more lasting importance than any riches or acclamation.Read More love, kindness, spiritual growth, desires of my heart