For Devotional Reading from the Daily Lectionary: Matthew 10: 24-33, 40-42 (The Message)
Text: Do not be bluffed into silence by threats from bullies. There’s nothing they can do to your soul, your core being. Save your fear for God, who holds your entire life–body and soul–in his hands. (v. 28, The Message)
Have you ever been ashamed of yourself? I don’t mean has someone else ever made you feel ashamed. I mean have you ever been ashamed by something that you did, or, more painfully, something you did not do? I have.
I was attending a service club meeting when someone made a very inappropriate remark at another group’s expense. The remark was not witty but cruel. Everyone at the table laughed. And rather than calming and politely saying that the remark was “out of bounds” or inappropriate, I kept silent. Shakespeare once wrote, “A coward dies a thousand times before his death, but the valiant taste of death but once…” (Julius Caesar) I now know what he meant for I have lived that moment of silence over more than once.
Our challenge as Jesus-followers is to live our lives in such a way that God is honored, glorified, if you will. We do not tear others down. Nor are we silent in the face of prejudice. Rather, we lift others up for like rising boats, when others are raised we are, too.
So today, challenge yourself to speak no ill of anyone. Seek ways to build others up. Glorify, Honor God not only by your deeds but by your words and thoughts.
Lord, let me see others through Your eyes. Let my words be kind and uplifting. Let my spirit be generous. Amen.