Monday, May 30, 2011

Do You Ever Feel This Way?

15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[c] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
 21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me.22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? (Romans 7:15-24)

I find myself feeling this way a lot.  That is why I am so glad for this verse:

 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

A Kind Word

"Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up." Proverbs 12:25

"Talk nice to each other!"  I say for the thousandth time to my children.  Well it feels like the thousandth time anyway.  We go round and round about this.  I explain to them how much better it will go for them if they ask nicely for things or just simply spoke in a pleasant manner to one another.  You know what I have discovered?  Adults need the same advice.

I don't know about you but I respond so much better to a pleasant word than to a demanding or condemning word.  The same lesson we try to teach our children as they interact with their siblings or even other children they come into contact with is the same lesson that we adults need to heed also.

Some days it may seem like you are just being polite, but the person to whom you are speaking may be going through an unusually difficult circumstance and your kind word may make the day a bit easier for them.  That waitress you just said thank you to or the cashier that you just asked how his day was may have been the only nice thing they heard from someone all day.  People in the service industry unfortunately know too well the critical nature of people.  Be different.  Use kind words.

As my kids are coming to the end of their year of dance classes a thought came to mind.  I thought it would be nice to give their dance teachers something to show appreciation for their work and dedication to my little ones this year.  Just as quickly as that thought came to my head another followed that they already know they are appreciated and I don't need to find time in my already busy schedule to do something for them.  It would be just one more thing on my to do list.  For some reason this stuck out to me.  I saw this thought for what it was.  It was an attack to try to deter me from showing kindness to another.  It is silly to think that even though the dance teachers might know they are appreciated, our simple act of kindness would not do them good and boost them up a little bit more. We all could use more boosting.

As you come into contact with others, make a point of speaking a kind word to another.  One last scripture that I think sums up this thought very nicely is Proverbs 16:24, "Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones."