"Stop being mean, bad-tempered and angry. Quarreling, harsh words and dislike of others should have no place in your lives. Instead, be kind to each other, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, just as God has forgiven you because you belong to Christ." (Ephesians 4:31-32 TLB)
As I was busy giving my two year old granddaughter her lunch
the other day. I had to remind her several times that the food was hot
and to be careful and blow on it. Although I was eating my food without
any problem, her little mouth is still very tender and what is not too
hot for me, is still too hot for her.
This little scenario
brought today's Scripture verses to my mind. It reminded me that just as
over the years, my lips and tongue and mouth have become much less
sensitive to hot food, my mind can also become much less sensitive to
others around me.
Relationships are difficult things to maneuver.
Whether it is a relationship within a marriage, with our children or
parents, within the church, or our jobs or with our neighbours, or even
other drivers sharing or not sharing the road, relationships are always
changing and creating challenges. And sometimes as we grow older
cynicism can very easily set in. We get sick and tired of always putting
up with the same behaviour, or what we consider unacceptable behaviour
in others which can gradually erode the tender-hearts God has blessed us
with through our relationship with Christ. We get caught up nattering
away to ourselves about how others have or are or we think are going to
treat us and before we know it quarreling, harsh words and the dislike
of others can become common place within our behaviour.|
has given us a cure for such hard-heartedness. He instructs us to be
kind to each other and tender-hearted, forgiving one another, just as He
has forgiven us because of Christ. God knows that if we just step out
and start being kind and tender towards others, whether we may feel like
it or not, those acts or words of kindness begin to work their power
upon our cynicism.
Just as blowing on hot food cools it down,
doing acts of kindness when we feel hot tempered towards others, cools
our attitude down and allows room for the Holy Spirit to begin to change
it into God's attitude toward others within us. And as this happens
forgiveness becomes easier and easier amidst any and all situations and
So today may each of us consider through the
guiding power of prayer, the state of our own heart. Has it become hard
hearted in regards to our relationships with others? Has there been any
quarreling, hard words or the dislike of others within our realm? If the
answer is "yes" may we make the decision to embrace God's cure for this
condition and begin, whether we feel like it or not, to be kind to each
other, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, just as God has forgiven
us because we belong to Christ.
Prayer: Father God we come to
You today and ask that You would search our hearts and reveal any
hard-heartedness within us. Bless us with obedience toward Your cure for
this condition and strengthen us to just step out and begin acting upon
it that our hearts may be restored to the tender condition You desire
within us. In Christ's name we prayer. Amen.