Be flexible

Philippians 2:4 NKJV

When it comes to the truth, you should be unbending. But when it comes to relationships, you must learn to be flexible. If you always need to be “right” and make the other person “wrong,” you’ll never enjoy stable, long-lasting relationships.

One author writes: “We will not last together because we were never wrong. We will last because when we were wrong, we found the invincible will to correct the wrong and the grace to endure whatever it took to survive it together. Our families are never perfect, but that doesn’t mean we cannot find a way to make it across the tumultuous seas onto the shores of love and life. Coming from backgrounds with different traditions and conflicting ideas, we bring baggage and unrealistic expectations to our relationships whether we are conscious of it or not.”

So what should you do? He continues: “Create in yourself an openness to change and an understanding that much correction will be needed for what you will face together. Make this attitude your charter for how you will operate as a couple. Always be willing to recalibrate your relationship to ensure that decisions made at one stage of life now fit the growth and maturity of the present.”

Do you know what the biggest problem in our relationships is? Selfishness! We want to have things our own way. But that’s not the scriptural way. The Bible says, “Let each of you look out not only for his [or her] own interests, but also for the interests of others.” When you live with that kind of mind-set, you’ll enjoy rich, rewarding relationships.

Soul food: Gen 25:19-27:46; Matt 18:21-35; Ps 61; Prov 6:16-19

Clear conscience

Romans 9:1 AMP

Paul wrote: ‘My conscience testifies with me [enlightened and prompted] by the Holy Spirit.’ When the Holy Spirit speaks to your conscience, two things happen. 1) He illuminates your heart with the truth. 2) He prompts you about what to do, because some things might be ‘right’ for others but ‘wrong’ for you. God has a particular plan for each of us and He doesn’t want us to be negatively influenced or to stray away from His path, so it’s important to follow His guidance.

Here are some Scriptures to think about when it comes to keeping our consciences clear: ‘I always try to maintain a clear conscience before God and all people’ (Acts 24:16 NLT). ‘Keeping your faith [leaning completely on God with absolute trust and confidence in His guidance] and having a good conscience; for some [people] have rejected [their moral compass] and have made a shipwreck of their faith’ (1 Timothy 1:19 AMP). ‘They must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience’ (1 Timothy 3:9 NIV). ‘Keep praying for us, for we are convinced that we have a good conscience, seeking to conduct ourselves honourably [that is, with moral courage and personal integrity] in all things’ (Hebrews 13:18 AMP). ‘The purpose of my instruction is that all believers would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and a genuine faith’ (1 Timothy 1:5 NLT).

As redeemed children of God, if we sin wilfully and don’t repent, we lose your sense of peace and joy. So let’s make the effort to keep our consciences clear and allow ourselves to be influenced by God.

Gen 17-19; Matt 17:14-27; Ps 40:9-17; Prov 6:6-8

Keep your conscience clear

Romans 9:1 AMPC

Paul writes: “My conscience [enlightened and prompted] by the Holy Spirit bearing witness with me.” Note that when the Holy Spirit speaks to your conscience, two things happen. First, He illuminates your heart with the truth. Second, He prompts you about what to do. Some things may be “right” for others and be “wrong” for you. Why? Because God has a particular plan for your life and He doesn’t want you to be negatively influenced, or even derailed.

Read the following Scriptures and consider them prayerfully: “Therefore I always exercise and discipline myself [mortifying my body, deadening my carnal affections, bodily appetites, and worldly desires, endeavoring in all respects] to have a clear (unshaken, blameless) conscience, void of offense toward God and toward men” (Acts 24:16 AMPC). “Holding fast to faith (that leaning of the entire human personality on God in absolute trust and confidence) and having a good (clear) conscience. By rejecting and thrusting from them [their conscience], some individuals have made shipwreck of their faith” (1 Timothy 1:19 AMPC). “They must possess the mystic secret of the faith [Christian truth as hidden from ungodly men] with a clear conscience” (1 Timothy 3:9 AMPC). “For we are convinced that we have a good (clear) conscience, that we want to walk uprightly and live a noble life, acting honorably and in complete honesty in all things” (Hebrews 13:18 AMPC).

As a redeemed child of God, when you sin willfully and don’t repent, you lose your sense of peace and joy and become uncomfortable in your own skin. So the word for you today is – keep your conscience clear.

Soul food: Gen 17-19; Matt 17:14-27; Ps 40:9-17; Prov 6:6-8

The truth of creation (5)

Genesis 1:24 NKJV

The theory of evolution is incompatible with the Bible. God said in creation, “Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind.” And “when God created mankind, he made them in the likeness of God…. When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness” (Genesis 5:1,3 NIV). In other words, man isn’t just another animal in the evolutionary chain. “Microevolution” teaches variations within species. For example, there are different types of dogs, etc. But there is no scientific evidence to support “macroevolution” – one species evolving into another species.

In reference to creation, Dr. Derek Prince wrote: “I am simple-minded enough to believe that it happened the way the Bible described it. I have been a professor at Britain’s largest university [Cambridge] for nine years. I hold various degrees and academic distinctions, and I feel in many ways I am quite sophisticated intellectually, but I don’t feel in any way intellectually inferior when I say that I believe the Bible record of creation. Prior to believing the Bible I have studied many other attempts to explain man’s origin and found them all unsatisfying and in many cases self-contradictory. I turned to study the Bible as a professional philosopher – not as a believer – and I commented to myself, ‘At least it can’t be any sillier than some of the other things I’ve heard,’ and to my astonishment, I discovered it had the answer.”

Are you looking for answers to your life’s problems? Or direction for your future? Read your Bible and live by its precepts!

Soul food: Ecc 9-12; Matt 15:1-14; Ps 5; Prov 5:1-2

The truth of creation (4)

1 Corinthians 15:39 NKJV

The Bible says, “All flesh is not the same…there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of animals, another of fish, and another of birds.”

One author writes: “The Bible tells us that animals are created ‘without understanding’ (Psalm 49:20 ESV). We are made in God’s ‘image.’ We aren’t merely a higher form of species on the evolutionary scale. As human beings, we are aware of our ‘being.’ God is ‘I AM,’ and we know that ‘we are.’ We have understanding that we exist. Among other unique characteristics, we have an innate ability to appreciate God’s creation. What animal gazes with awe at…the magnificence of the Grand Canyon? What animal obtains joy from the sounds of music or takes the time to form itself into an orchestra to create and harmonize music? What animal among the beasts sets up court systems and apportions justice to its fellow creatures? We are moral beings. While birds and other creatures have instincts to create (nests, etc.), we have the ability to uncover the hidden laws of electricity. We can utilize the law of aerodynamics to transport ourselves around the globe. We also have the God-given ability to appreciate the value of creation. We unearth the hidden treasures of gold, silver, diamonds and oil to make use of them for our own benefit. Only humans have the unique capability to appreciate God for this incredible creation and to respond to His love.”

Yes, God created us, redeemed us, has a special purpose for us, and loves us so much that when we die, He wants to take us to heaven to live with Him forever.

Soul food: Ecc 5-8; Matt 14:22-36; Ps 149; Prov 4:25-27