4. Praise God - Ph 2:14-16; Ps 40:1-3
4. Praise the Lord. Authentically praise the name of the Lord when given the opportunity. Instead of moaning about life praise God for what he has done and is doing in your life. Ps 40:1-3
Philippians 2:14-16 -Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky.
Have you ever stopped to count how many times a day you say something negative. I notice that especially when my wife and I go window shopping. She will usually say something like, "Is that table setting just lovely?" I will then throw in my two cents worth, "I really don't like all that flowery stuff on it." If I'm really in the wrong place in my thinking I might throw in a "HA" before I say anything and then tell her how much I really don't like it.
Don't get me wrong, It's okay to have an opinion. But sometimes an opinion boldly stated can cause hurt feelings and division. This is not way to shine the light of Christ. When we were first married, my sister told me that she didn't like to be around us. "One minute you are arguing and the next you are lovey-dovey." My sister could have used the shining light of Jesus instead of the roller-coaster ride of two highly-opinionated people.
Unfortunately I see a lot of this among Christians. There are a lot of people who like to tell their opinions very loudly especially if they had no part in it. WE complain about the temperature of the sanctuary, the color of the carpet, the way someone did something, how the offering is being spent, or even what the preacher said or did THIS TIME. The problem is that people outside the church or visiting the church hear this instead of seeing the shining light of Jesus.
At the children's home where I used to work we had a way to stop complaints. if someone continued to talk negative about someone or something we would say, "Now tell us five things good things." This is a good way to train your mouth not to run off before your brain is in gear! Think before you speak.
Another good ways to learn to say positive things is to think of all the things God has done for you. I love what David said in Psalms 40:1-3:
I waited patiently for the Lord;
he turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear the Lord
and put their trust in him.
He put a new song in my mouth of praise to our God! Let's sing it out and let our light shine for Jesus today. May God bless you as you shine the light and speak beautiful things today.
PRAYER THOUGHT: Dear God Almighty; You are worthy of all my praise. Forgive me when I don't watch what comes out of my mouth. Help me to speak words of praise to you and gentle words of compassion to others. Fill my mouth with worthy stuff and nudge me when I've said enough. In Jesus' name, AMEN!