Don’t meddle in other people’s business

2019-01-12
2 Thessalonians 3:11 NKJV

One day Peter looked at John and said to Jesus, “What about him, Lord?” Jesus immediately rebuked Peter and said, “What is that to you? Just follow me” (See John 21:21-22). Now, if the apostle Peter could get into trouble for meddling, any of us can. The issue here isn’t about helping others; it’s about knowing when to stay out of the middle and mind your own business. Sometimes we jump in and try to solve problems without being asked. And not only are our efforts fruitless, they’re resented. As you become spiritually mature and get over your need to “fix” everybody, life becomes simpler. Now that you’re not “butting in” where you’re not invited, you’re more available to help where you’re really needed. Not meddling, however, goes beyond avoiding the temptation to police, enlighten, or rescue others. It means not eavesdropping, gossiping, talking behind people’s backs, and needing to figure everybody out. Recognize any of these traits in yourself? If so, deal with the problem before it costs you the respect of others. Do you know why we focus so much on other people’s shortcomings? You’ve guessed it – to keep from having to look closely at ourselves. The only thing you can change about others – is your attitude toward them. Paul writes, “Some…among you…are busybodies. Now those who are such we command and exhort…that they work in quietness” (2 Thessalonians 3:11-12 NKJV). One counselor says: “Being a peacemaker doesn’t mean we get in the middle. We are bearers of peace by staying peaceful ourselves…not harboring turmoil…not causing the extra chaos created when we get in the middle of other people’s affairs and relationships.”

Soul food: Isa 38-41; Luke 2:34-40; Ps 74:1-11; Prov 2:6

Ask for a dream (4)

2019-01-04
Genesis 45:11 NKJV

The dream God gave Joseph was not about him feeling good because he was now the number two guy in Egypt, but about positioning him to feed his family and the world in time of famine. When God gives us a dream, it will bless us – and others. The Bible says, ‘God so loved the world’ (John 3:16). When we let Him, God will use us to help fulfil His will. From Joseph’s family would come Jesus, the Redeemer of the world, but Joseph’s family was being threatened with extinction. So God put a plan in place which involved Joseph interpreting Pharaoh’s dream and being elevated to the throne so that His plan could be accomplished. Joseph’s story proves that a God-given dream will change our attitude towards others, including those who mistreat us. It will make us more gracious, loving, and forgiving. Remembering how they betrayed him, Joseph’s brothers trembled as they stood before him realising he held their fate in his hands. But he refused to retaliate, or even utter a word about what they had done. He told them: ‘I will provide for you.’ Instead of revenge, he wanted the relationship restored. He looked beyond their actions and saw God at work in all he had been through. ‘You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives’ (Genesis 50:20 NIV). How we treat others, especially when we’re in a position of authority, is really important. We should never abuse any authority that we may have been given. We need to be treating people how God treats them – with love.

Isa 8-11; Luke 1:26-38; Ps 10:1-11; Prov 1:10-16

Ask God for a dream (4)


Genesis 45:11 NKJV

The dream God gave Joseph was not about feeling good because he was now the number two guy in Egypt, but about positioning him to feed his family and the world in time of famine. Don’t miss the point here. When God gives you a dream, it will bless you – and others. The Bible says, “God so loved the world” (John 3:16). God’s plan is not to make you an icon, but an instrument to fulfill His will. From Joseph’s family would come the Redeemer of the world, but his family was being threatened with extinction. So God put a plan in place which involved Joseph interpreting Pharaoh’s dream and being elevated to the throne so that His plan could be accomplished. And here’s another thought. Joseph’s story proves that a God-given dream will change your attitude toward others, including those who mistreat you. It will make you more gracious, loving, and forgiving. Remembering how they betrayed him, Joseph’s brothers trembled as they stood before him realizing he held their fate in his hands. But he refused to retaliate, or even utter a word about what they’d done. Listen to what he told them: “I will provide for you.” Instead of revenge, he wanted the relationship restored. He looked beyond their actions and saw God at work in all He’d been through. “You meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day” (Genesis 50:20 NKJV). How you treat others, especially when you’re in a position of strength, determines how God will treat you.

Soul food: Isa 8-11; Luke 1:26-38; Ps 10:1-11; Prov 1:10-16

Giant-killers (1)

2018-11-16
1 Samuel 17:50 NIV

1 Samuel 17 is the backdrop for the story of David and Goliath. The shepherd slays the warrior. The boy conquers the giant. God gives David victory over his giant, to inspire us to confront our own giants. Giants can be tangible or intangible: the things we can’t overcome because, gripped by fear, we think we can’t. They can also be seemingly unattainable goals, unfinished projects, or unfulfilled dreams. A giant is anything or anybody keeping us from being or doing what God wants us to be or do. Giants can be internal or external, real or imagined, physical or emotional. A giant could be an attitude, a habit, a belief, a philosophy, or a memory. It could be a person who stands between us and God; between who we are and who God wants us to be; between where we are and where God wants us to go; between what we believe and what God wants us to believe. Giants have one goal – to stop our progress and prevent us from reaching our destiny. But giant-killers see victory in the shadow of defeat. They perceive every fight as a test where the challenge is to turn a negative into a positive. Conflict is accepted and resistance is expected. To them conflict is growth, and facing an enemy is what happens before we get to advance. Giants can expose our hidden strengths, help us measure our growth, and feed our confidence in God. Giant-killers see opportunity in opposition, potential in problems, and victory in the shadow of defeat. And with God’s help we can become a giant-killer.

Rom 12-14; John 11:1-16; Ps 105:1-15; Prov 30:1-4

Giant-killers (1)


1 Samuel 17:50 TLV

First Samuel chapter 17 is the backdrop for the story of David and Goliath. The shepherd slays the warrior. The boy conquers the giant. God gives David victory over his giant, to inspire us to confront our own giants. Giants can be tangible or intangible: the things we can’t overcome because, seduced by fear, we think we can’t. They can also be unattainable goals, unfinished projects, or unfulfilled dreams – the “loose ends” of life that keep us mired in mediocrity. A giant is anything or anybody keeping you from being or doing what God wants you to be or do. Giants can be internal or external, real or imagined, physical or emotional. A giant could be an attitude, a habit, a belief, a philosophy, or a memory. It could be a person who stands between you and God; between who you are and who God wants you to be; between where you are and where God wants you to go; between what you believe and what God wants you to believe. Giants have one goal – to stop your progress and prevent you from reaching your destiny. But giant-killers see victory in the shadow of defeat! They perceive every fight as a test where the challenge is to turn a negative into a positive. Conflict is accepted and resistance is expected. To them conflict is growth, and overcoming is the prerequisite to promotion. Giants can expose our hidden strengths, be a measuring stick for our growth, and feed our confidence in God. Giant-killers see opportunity in opposition, potential in problems, and victory in the shadow of defeat. And with God’s help you can become a giant-killer.

Soul food: Rom 12-14; John 11:1-16; Ps 105:1-15; Prov 30:1-4