Today’s fortune cookie is very timely: “He who throws mud loses ground.” I have seen and heard a lot of ground being tossed around lately. Look at the news or on social media. People have surely forgotten the phrase often shared by parents or grandparents – if you have nothing nice to say, do not say anything at all.
Titus mentions the importance of trying “to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people” (3:2 ESV). We all are God’s creation and we are all valuable in His eyes. He designed each one of us with special gifts, each one of us for a purpose. God loves everyone. God’s desire is that we honor each other—that we value each other. This means you recognize that each person is important, each person matters. Even further from this, we are to love each person – every single person.
Unfortunately, it often seems as if we throw mud instead of extending a hand and two ears. Instead of forming relationships with people that we may not agree with on some or many areas, we point out their flaws, attack them at every turn, and choke ourselves. Yes, we choke ourselves. Proverbs 1:31 speaks of eating a bitter fruit because of living our own way, and even choking on our own schemes. Remember, we always harvest what we plant (see Galatians 6:7). If you are spreading seeds that include name calling, half-truths, verbal tongue lashings, etc., you will enjoy a not-so-uplifting harvest. The question to ask today is: What am I planting? The next question to ask: Is what I’m planting today going to give me the harvest I desire?
“Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.” – Ephesians 4:29 [NLT]
“Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” – Romans 12:2 [NIV]
I’ve Got the Power
“I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms.” – Ephesians 1:19 [NLT]
How to Get It?
“Peter replied, ‘Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise is to you, and to your children, and even to the Gentilesh—all who have been called by the Lord our God.‘ Then Peter continued preaching for a long time, strongly urging all his listeners, ‘Save yourselves from this crooked generation!‘Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church that day—about 3,000 in all.“ – Acts 2:38-41 [NLT]
- Hear the Word
- God Calls you to Himself
- You receive the Word – Repent & Trust Him
How you Quench or Grieve It?
- Quench—1 Thessalonians 5:19 – Do not quench the Spirit. (NIV) Do not stifle the Holy Spirit. (NLT) [[Suppressive / Destructive / Non-Unifying]]
- Holy Spirit – Fire – Purifying / Enlightening / Enlivening – Don’t despise Spiritual Gifts
- NOT ALLOWING HIM TO MOVE FREELY
- Grieve—Ephesians 4:30 – And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. (ESV) [[“Lupe” – To cause grief / To offend]]
- Lying, angry, corrupt behavior – actions, behavior towards God and others
- ACTING OUT IN SINFUL MANNER
How You Use It?
Counsels You (John 14:16)
Cleanses you (Romans 15:16)
Comforts you (2 Corinthians 1:3)
Empowers you (Romans 15:13)
Helps you when weak (Romans 8:26)
Gives you confidence (2 Corinthians 5:5-6)
Assures adoption in God’s family (Galatians 4:6-7)
Encourages you (Acts 9:31)
Gives you new life (Romans 8:11)
Gives you wisdom & revelation (Ephesians 1:17)
Leads you to all truth (John 16:13)
Helps you pray (Romans 8:26)
Convicts you (John 16:8)
Strengthens & renews you (Ephesians 3:16)
Brings you reassurance (Romans 8:16)
Sanctifies you (2 Thessalonians 2:13)
Fills you (Ephesians 5:18)
Gives you joy (1 Thessalonians 1:6)
Helps you remember (John 14:26)
Dispenses God’s love in our hearts (Romans 5:5)