Proverbs 17 12-17-18

“Just try harder.” How? We’re giving it all we have! It’s time to call for help: Holy Spirit, help us!

Proverbs 17:14 Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.

Understand that I am having to practice what I preach–and lately have been somewhat unsuccessful. Whether it’s a change in medication, the season, the weather, age, expectations–the “why” is not as important as the “what shall we do about it?”

When we feel overwhelmed or blindsided is a great time to call on the LORD for peace, direction and strength. Come to think of it, when we feel on top of the world and in control is another great time to call on the LORD in gratefulness and thanksgiving. Jesus is wanting us to lean on Him ALL THE TIME, not just when we think we need Him. It’s a relational thing. To be filled with the Spirit is to be empty of self. Easy to say, but hard to do. When we are feeling confident enough or worthy enough to call on Him is when we are most apt to trust in ourselves rather than Him. When we are feeling our worst is when we NEED to call on Him, but now we feel unworthy, or our feeler is stuck and we can’t let go of the ugly feelings inside.

Research shows that it takes our bodies TIME to get past the physical reaction (chemicals released within us). What do we do? I am employing (or bolstering) these guard rails in my life:

  • Let go of expectations and any entitlements I might have; I don’t have special rights!
  • Cut people some slack; we have no idea what their life is like or what they are experiencing.
  • When I feel annoyed or frustrated, immediately step back mentally and emotionally.
  • Ask the LORD for gentleness, patience and self-control. We need a download of His LOVE!

Keep in mind that our testimony is at stake. In order to keep our moral authority, we must be on-target morally. I know that I never have the right to be ugly to anyone. I wish I could just throw a switch and be done with it, but I can’t; my flesh won’t let me. I see more each day why the Apostle Paul took a dimmer and dimmer view of himself:

(Early in his ministry)

1 Corinthians 15:9 For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.

(In the middle of his life)

Ephesians 3:8 Although I am less than the least of all God’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,

(Late in life)

1 Timothy 1:16 But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life.

Jesus has unlimited patience available to us if we ask for it and are willing to do whatever it takes to use it. Let’s keep on striving toward the goal set before us: To Be Like Jesus!

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