Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Walk Worthy

“… walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, with all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”
Ephesians 4:1-3

“Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.”
Ephesians 4:29

Yesterday and today have been darkened by many discouraging thoughts. As those thoughts came up, I would pray, “Lord, give me grace for help in this time of need” and “I ask for your peace Lord.” I, then, would quote, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto to you: not as the world giveth, give I unto to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” (John 14:27)

And so, even this morning, as I cry out to my Lord because of a particular burden to my soul about my church and my failings in my walk with Him, I can sense His grace, His love for me, settling my heart, and, I believe, communicating with me and telling me a few things about how to approach this particular hurt in my heart about the way this church of mine in Romania proceeds.

First, I believe He said to me in a still small voice that this is my church, and whatever the problem I may be having with it may be, it is mine. With that in mind, He revealed to me that I am a part of this church and that I am to try and make it work like a marriage.

So, this is where the above verses to this devotion fit in. I forgive and forbear, all in love. Whatever issue with this or that person grates on my nerves or raises my cackles, I am to forbear, to be longsuffering, to love, and to lead by example.

And then, the last thing I want to mention is how I am supposed to use my words, letting no corrupt thing escape my lips, but only words that are good, to be used for edification, so they may minister grace unto the hearers.

I am supposed to have a beautiful mouth.

All this, again, reinstates this idea that I am to lead by example. To grow in my own walk, not to point out what I see are the faults of others. In that growth process, as much as my example follows the Lord Jesus Christ, I will, then, lead by example.

Jesus, help me to have a good example in front of others “with all lowliness and meekness” (emphasis mine). You can use it to strengthen the unity of Your Spirit in our church, in Your bond of peace. Oh, my, Lord, Jesus Christ, I am weak and beggardly in the face of this task, and I ask that You be the strength in my weakness that the task at hand will be used for Your glory.

(Originally written on November 21, 2005, in response to my discouragement in the church I joined in Romania. To give an honest background, this church was in large part a ministry to the Romanian Gypsies, who are a culture so different than my own. I was simply struggling to love them as I should. I have great respect to the Morgan Family, who have been missionaries to this largely unreached population. A lot of mission-fields are challenging, and I got to experience first-hand the challenges of working with the poor and Gypsy population in the town I lived while I was in the Peace Corps.)

Rupea, Romania (August 2005)

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