Monday, January 7, 2019

Taming the Tongue and Beyond

James 3-5
Taming the Tongue and Beyond
James is an epistle not of straw but great practical wisdom. He very clearly and graphically directs blows on our heads while also thankfully giving caring admonition on how to behave righteously as we confess our sins: Proverbs 1:5: Let the wise listen 
“Consider it pure JOY when you come into trials of diverse kinds, because the testing of your faith develops perseverance and perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.”  I am becoming more and more confident that life is mostly walking through the valley of the shadow of death (flowers grow/rivers flow) stated in one of the hardest verses in It is in the trials that I have learned, not mountaintops although I like those too. 
I like Paul am a mess Growing Slowly Wise in Trials. The next verse says  Ask for Wisdom without doubting and He will generously pour it out. – GOD WORKS IN TRIALS IF WE will LISTEN And LEARN (You have heard me speak of God’s miraculous healing in futile illness, near suicidal leading of a church and near death drowning in Lake Michigan       Wisdom is born of PAIN

But for me the most impactful lessonamongst many is about the Tongue, speech and listening.  The tongue is wild and untamable, sinking ships, burning forests and praising and cursing everyone including God at the same time. 
Yikes!! Help me Jesus, for I confess before you and these men my waywardness in guick speaking and also slow listening.
“Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for a man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires” (James 1:19-20).  
Most of you know that my calling is as an encourager a LISTENING PRESENCE like Barnabas as Hospital Chaplain.  SIT AT HIS FEET AND LISTEN (MARY LK 11:39).
But I am convicted by the need to “humble myself” and listen patiently, not react and speak quickly, and certainly not become angry, as that is a loss of control.
1Samuel 3: Samuel, Samuel (Randy, Randy)- Speak your servant is listening- Here I am.
GOD SPOKE Audibly when I was STILL/SILENT/Listening- “THIS is the Way, WALK in it.” (Isaiah 30:21). Ps 46:11- BE STLL and KNOW
He who has an ear, let him hear (Matt 11:15).
“My Sheep HEAR My Voice, I know them and they follow me.” (John 10:27).
James offers solutions such as:
Confessto one another that you may be healed
Pray and praise Godand pray for one another w/o grumbling
Submit, purify your hearts and draw near to the Lordas He draws near to you
Humble yourselfunder His mighty hand that in due time He may lift you up
Listen and Lead a good lifewith good deeds to the glory of God 
Be joyful under convictionas it is developing maturity
Ask for His wisdom,which He will generously give without finding fault, unless you’re double-minded. Be patient and persevere, stand firm for He is coming again soon.
REVELATION 1:3- Hear His  Word and Do It! He is coming soon!


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