Sunday, December 1, 2019
I saw a woman’s four-caret diamond ring the other day, it must have been worth $50,000! The gold band was a simple one, with a few smaller diamonds on either side. Holding the large diamond in the middle was a setting that included five or six prongs.
Although the setting doesn’t get nearly as much attention as the diamond itself, it is equally as important. Any wise jeweler would never put such a precious jewel in a poor or weak setting. If he did, then one small bump and the gem would be lost. The strength and quality of the setting will determine the security and staying power of the gem.
Character is like that setting. God has promised us such wonderful gems! Yet without the basis of character, His promises would be lost or forfeited at the first bump. The Holy Spirit desires to produce character in each of us prior to the setting of the gems. Whether those gems are marriage, an influential position, a ministry, finances or a family, each of these will require character. This is the setting that needs to be developed prior to the placement of the gem.
Strengthen your setting. Build your character. Learn to forgive, to be diligent, to be honest. Learn to stay steady and faithful, to keep commitments, to go by what you know and not necessarily by what you feel.
Character is the ability to follow through on a worthy decision long after the emotion of making that decision has passed.
God will refine your metal until its’ pure gold. He will shape your character until it’s strong and trustworthy. Then when God sees that the setting is ready, He will be faithful to place His very best gems in your life. That’s when you will shine.
-Adapted from Wayne Cordeiro in Doing Church as a Team
Thursday, November 28, 2019
Slapping a sloppy brush of thanksgiving over everything in my life leaves me deeply thankful for very few things in my life...life-changing gratitude does not fasten to a life unless nailed through with one very specific nail at a time.
-Ann Voskamp, 1000 Gifts
Sunday, November 24, 2019
Thursday, November 21, 2019
A thought Transfixed me: for the first time in my life I saw the truth as it is sent into song by so many poets, proclaimed as the final wisdom by so many thinkers. The truth - that love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire. Then I grasped the meaning of the of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through and in love.
-Victor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning
Wednesday, November 13, 2019
The man who has died to self has no ambitions, so he has nothing to be jealous about. He has no reputation, so he has nothing to fight about. He has no possessions, so he has nothing to worry about. He has no rights, so he can't suffer any wrongs. He is already dead--so no one can kill him.
Monday, November 11, 2019
Someone who is filled with ideas, concepts, opinions and convictions cannot be a good host. There is no inner space to listen, no openness to discover the gift of the other. It is not difficult to see how those who "know it all" can kill a conversation and prevent an interchange of ideas. Poverty of the mind as a spiritual attitude is a growing willingness to recognize the incomprehensibility of the mystery of life.
-Henri Nouwen, Reaching Out