Hou aan verbeter

2018-04-29
1 Korintiërs 9:27 NLV

Paulus skryf: ‘Onthou, daar hardloop baie atlete op die baan, maar net een ontvang die prys. Hardloop só dat julle die prys sal ontvang. Al die deelnemers pas absolute selfdissipline toe. Húlle doen dit om ‘n prys te wen wat gou sal vergaan. Maar óns doen dit vir ‘n ewige prys. Daarom pyl ek reguit op die wenpaal af, doelgerig met elke tree wat ek gee. Ek is soos ‘n bokser wat met elke hou tref. Ek brei my liggaam en dissiplineer dit om werklik bruikbaar te wees. Ek wil tog nie, terwyl ek vir ander gepreek het, self deur God gediskwalifiseer word nie’ (verse 24-27 NLV). Tensy jy beheer van jou lewe neem, sal jy altyd met die wete lewe dat jy nie aan jouself behoort nie. Jy behoort aan wie of wat ook al jou beheer. Om te verbeter, moet jy probeer om hierdie drie dinge altyd voor oë te hou: 1) Lees. Dawid het gesê, ‘Hoe lief het ek u gebooie! Ek oordink dit die hele dag’ (Psalm 119:97 NLV). Dissiplineer jouself om elke dag iets te lees wat jou geestelik, emosioneel, verhoudingsgewys en beroepsgewys sal help. Plaas jou Bybel bo-aan die lysie van dit wat jy wil lees. 2) Belonings. Die skrywer Mike Delaney het opgemerk, ‘Enige besigheid of industrie wat die luiaards en die ywerige werkers ewe veel beloon, sal vind dat hulle kort voor lank met meer luiaards as ywerige werkers sit.’ 3) Resultate. Die volgende keer wat jy voor ‘n taak te staan kom en aan dit wat gemaklik is om te doen eerder as wat reg is dink, verander jou fokus. Tel die voordele daaraan verbonde om te doen wat reg is en begin met die taak. Moenie op die werk fokus nie, fokus op die resultate.

Sielskos: Gal 5:22; Luk 10:25-37; Ef 4:31-32; Spr 2:4

Take the right approach

2018-04-28
Proverbs 17:27 NIV

When we see the people around us hurting or struggling with something, we may feel like we’ve got the answers or the right advice for them. But if we don’t have the right approach, we can end up making things worse. Good ideas and advice are wasted when we try and force it on other people. If God’s leading us to say something then we should pray for wisdom about the right time and the right way to say it. If we’re not sure that it’s from God, then we need to ask for wisdom about whether we should say it all. We need to pray that we’d say the right thing, at the right time, in the right way. ‘A man of knowledge uses words with restraint, and a man of understanding is even-tempered.’ Timing is really important when we’re giving advice. If people aren’t ready to receive it, then it won’t help. Sometimes it’s obvious to us when someone isn’t ready to listen; other times we may misjudge the situation. We can always ask God to open their minds to what we feel we need to say. But our efforts at helping someone to change may fail, unless we approach them in love and humility. If we don’t approach them in the right way, they may respond with a ‘who-are-you-to-tell-me’ attitude. The Bible says: ‘Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones’ (Proverbs 16:24 NIV). We shouldn’t approach people in a judgmental, critical or harsh way. We need to be sharing kind, encouraging and supportive words if we want to be taking the right approach in helping others.

Acts 22-23; Mark 5:11-20; Ps 144:9-15; Prov 11:12-13

Kies die regte benadering


Spreuke 17:27 NLV

Dis nie genoeg om die regte antwoorde te hê nie; jy het die regte benadering nodig. Goeie idees en raad word gemors wanneer jy dit by mense se kele afdruk. Wysheid beteken om die regte ding, op die regte tyd, op die regte manier te sê. ‘Iemand wat kennis het, praat nie baie nie. Iemand met insig bly kalm.’ Jou pogings om iemand te help verander sal misluk, of erger, hulle wegstoot, tensy jy hulle met liefde en nederigheid benader. Die meeste mense weet reeds wat hulle probleem is. Die kans is goed dat hulle al ‘n rukkie daarmee worstel en diep binne-in hulle wil hulle beter doen. ‘Mooi woorde is soos heuning; dit is goed vir die gees en bevorderlik vir sy lewe’ (Spreuke 16:24 NLV). Jesus het gesê, ‘en julle sal begryp wat die waarheid beteken, en die waarheid sal julle vrymaak’ (Johannes 8:32 NLV). As mense dus nie die waarheid op die manier wat jy dit deel wil aanvaar nie, is die probleem dalk deels joune. Die voormalige Amerikaanse Senaat Kapelaan, Richard Halverson, skryf: ‘Jy kan jou idees aan mense as koeëls of as sade aanbied. Jy kan hulle skiet of hulle saai. Idees wat as koeëls gebruik word maak inspirasie en motivering dood. Idees wat as sade gebruik word skiet wortel, groei en dra vrugte in die lewe waarin hulle geplant is. Daar is egter ‘n risiko hieraan verbonde: Sodra dit deel word van die persoon waarin dit geplant is, sal jy waarskynlik geen krediet vir jou oorspronklike idee kry nie. As jy egter gewillig is om sonder die krediet klaar te kom, sal jy ‘n groot oes hê.’ Die woord vir jou vandag is dus: Kies die regte benadering.

Sielskos: Hand 22-23; Mark 5:11-20; Ps 144:9-15; Spr 11:12-13

Take the right approach


Proverbs 17:27 NIV

It’s not enough to have the right answers; you need the right approach. Good ideas and sound advice are wasted when you use a ram-it-down-your-throat approach. Wisdom means saying the right thing, at the right time, in the right way. “A man of knowledge uses words with restraint, and a man of understanding is even-tempered.” Your efforts at helping someone to change will fail, or worse, alienate them, unless you approach them in love and humility. Most people already know what their problem is. Chances are they’ve been grappling with it for a while, and deep down they want to do better. And unless you’re prepared for a “Who-are-you-to-tell-me” response, you’ve got to approach them in the right way. “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones” (Proverbs 16:24 NIV). Jesus said, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32 NIV). So if people won’t receive the truth in the way you’re sharing it, maybe the problem is partially yours. Former U.S. Senate Chaplain Richard Halverson writes: “You can offer your ideas to people as bullets or as seeds. You can shoot them or sow them. Ideas used as bullets kill inspiration and motivation. Ideas used as seeds take root, grow, and bear fruit in the life in which they are planted. But there’s a risk: Once it becomes part of those in whom it’s planted, you’ll probably get no credit for originating the idea. But if you’re willing to do without the credit…you’ll reap a rich harvest.” So the word for you today is: Take the right approach.

Soul food: Acts 22-23; Mark 5:11-20; Ps 144:9-15; Prov 11:12-13

Lethal laziness (4)

2018-04-27
Proverbs 24:30 NLT

Who are you mimicking? Who do you have as role-model? Paul said ‘Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ’ (1 Corinthians 11:1 NIV). And if we claim to admire Jesus’ disciples, we have to remember that these were people who spent themselves on spreading the kingdom of God, just the same when they were in good times or under threat. Where most of us would’ve fallen back on ‘Help, Lord!’ prayers, they didn’t sit under persecution; they rose above it and prayed for boldness to keep spreading the gospel. Who you follow sets the bar for who you can become. If there are lazy people in your circles, you’ll have to know how to respond to them so you can avoid being shaped by them. Solomon said a lazy person was as irritating as smoke in the eyes (take a look at Proverbs 10:26). What they do takes twice as long to finish, and then either has to be re-done or thrown out. Their presence on the job can be worse than their absence. Proverbs 24:30-31 shows the devastating cost of mimicking lazy people: ‘I walked by the field of a lazy person, the vineyard of one with no common sense. I saw that it was overgrown with nettles. It was covered with weeds, and its walls were broken down’ (NLT). That’s the future if you follow lazy people. Let’s be clear though, we must show compassion toward those who are down and out for legitimate reasons. But for those who are lazy just to avoid work: avoid mimicking them at all costs. You don’t want them to be your role-model.

Acts 20-21; Mark 5:1-10; Ps 144:1-8; Prov 11:10-11