Archive for the ‘counsel’ Category

Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed. – Proverbs 15:22 (NIV)

Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety. – Proverbs 11:14 (KJV)

Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters. – Romans 14:1 (NIV)

We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. – Romans 15:1 (NIV)

People are in need.  People need comfort.  People need counsel.  People stand in desperate need of shared words of both comfort and counsel.

Incident #1:

A family finds itself victims of random burglary and ends up behind in bills and other matters.  The wife attends church, but the husband doesn’t come any longer.  They are split on approaching the church for help.

What do you think that they are in need of from other believers? Counsel? Comforting words?

Incident #2:

A parent discovers that her only child has shown signs of mental illness.  She is a woman of faith and a prayer warrior.  However, she seems to be at the end of her rope with the school administration pressuring her to have her daughter tested and the other parent both absent and not involved at all.

What is this woman in need of from her brothers and sisters in Christ? Counsel? Comfort?

We can go about things the wrong way.  We can make assumptions due to unmet expectations and all sorts of other junk that we put into things.  We need to be able to offer counsel to one another.  We need to be able to offer words of comfort to one another, too.

Let’s be honest and just keep it real.  We need to meet people at that point of their need.  If they are weak, let us build them up.  If they are out of line, let us bring them back into line.  Let us do it in such a way that they are better off rather than beaten down.  Give them words of comfort.  Share words of wisdom.  Offer wise counsel.  Comfort those whose hearts are weighed down with worries and weariness.

  34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” – John 13:34-35 (NIV)

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Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.- Psalm 42:11 (ESV)
Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation- Psalm 42:5 (ESV)
I talk to myself. I have done so for years. Oftentimes, I even talk out loud to myself. It drives my wife and kids crazy. I find myself talking to myself more often when I am troubled or disturbed. I am just trying to sort out my thoughts it seems. But I am talking to myself…
Look at these two Psalms. The writer is speaking to his “soul.” In other words, he is speaking to who else but himself. If you ever want to ride an emotional roller coaster, get on board Psalms as your daily devotion. Somewhere between sharing about the man who delights in the Law and the praise of the Lord through thanksgiving, this repetitive verse emerges in two back-to-back Psalms full of self-talk. That’s what the motivational psychologists and feel-good pundits and propagandists call talking to yourself these days.
Feel free to exercise your freedom of speech. Speak out loud and speak loudly. Use your voice to get yourself back on track. The psalmist did so. He used this expression of self to get back in focus. His focus was to be centered on the Lord, His Savior. Regain your focus. Talk it up and talk it out.
I see the value of talking to myself. I see that it helps me sort some things out without losing it entirely. I think I am going to keep talking to myself, even if it drives the rest of the house crazy from time to time.

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Do not forget Him but think of Him often. Adore Him continually. Live and die with Him. This is the glorious work of a Christian; in a word, this is our profession.- Brother Lawrence

Brother Lawrence’s The Practice of the Presence of God gives ancient wisdom on walking with God.  Get into Christianity or Christendom for any length of time and some names like Bunyan, Moody, Lewis, Chambers and Finney echo with wise words on everything from salvation to heaven itself.  Yet, when you come to the point where you can read Brother Lawrence’s carefully crafted letters in The Practice of the Presence of God, you feel as if Saint Francis of Assisi had a love-child with the Apostle Paul, giving birth to the stirring soul of Brother Lawrence.

As Christians, Brother Lawrence shares that we have a “glorious work.” Included in this glorious work are three major practices:

  1. Thinking of God often
  2. Adoring God without ceasing
  3. Living and dying with God

Brother Lawrence calls it our “glorious work,” saying: “…in a word, this is our profession.” He affirms it as our priority by stating: “If we do not know it, we must learn it. ” In other words, if it is not your daily practice and pursuit, make it your business to learn how to make it so.

In our daily pursuits, we must learn the “glorious work of a Christian.” You can download and print a copy of Brother Lawrence’s The Practice of the Presence of God for fee.  Yet, meditate on what Brother Lawrence says here.  Spend some time thinking deeply about the “glorious work” that God has called you to do as a Christian.  How would you rate yourself on your thinking of God and your adoration of God? What about how you live for God? See where you stand now.  Compare where you stand to where God has called you.  See what gaps exist, and then fill your gaps one by one.  Pray to God that He strengthen and supply you as you go forward.  He can provide you with what you lack.  See it and go for it, and then practice it daily as long as you live.

We cannot have too much trust in so good and faithful a Friend who will never fail us in this world nor in the next. – Brother Lawrence

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If you live a life guided by wisdom, you won’t limp or stumble as you run.
– Proverbs 4:12 (NLT)
Do not do as the wicked do or follow the path of evildoers.
– Proverbs 4:14 (NLT)
We all need could use some good counsel. Our youth could use good counsel as well, especially those whose parents have been distracted or detoured with drugs, incarceration, substance abuse, and other issues. Some youth just haven’t been disciplined by their parents in this day and age. They haven’t been exposed to positive role models, especially by those adults who are supposed to take care of them day after day. Good counsel that comes from godly wisdom is the prescription for the condition that is ailing those who stand at the crossroads of life about to wander down the wrong path.
There is a way that will keep you from stumbling or falling prey to life’s many obstacles and obstructions. Also, there is a way that is ascribed to the “wicked”and “evilddoers.” You have the power of choice, a free will to choose your path in life. Your options can be viewed as limitless or limited, but you have the choice. Either you can accept good counsel and godly wisdom or you can reject it, going the way of the wicked or the foolish. No matter which you choose, the choice is yours.

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