Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Mid-Week Message - Choosing Wisely

"So be careful how you live.  Don't live like fools, but like those who are wise.  Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days.  Don't act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do."  Ephesians 5:15-17  (NLT)  

There is a little rhyme about a peanut that I used to say with my daughter.  It goes like this:  "A peanut sat on a railroad track, his heart was all a-flutter.  Along came a train whistling down that track -- toot, toot, peanut butter."  It's just a silly little poem but I found it useful in teaching her about making smart choices.  Those of you with children know that anything that can be used to teach should be taken advantage of.  I believe Jesus used parables in the same way.  He saw an opportunity to teach and took it. 

Even as an adult though, I think that little peanut can teach us something.  Obviously it wouldn't be smart to sit down and rest on a railroad track.  But we are faced with choices that have to made all day, every day.  When we open our eyes in the morning, we are presented with a blank slate and as we move through the day, we have multiple chances to choose wisely.

As people cross our paths we have the option of sharing the love of the Lord with them.  We have chances to invest a bit of time in their lives, showing them they are important and finding out how we can pray for them.  Or we can let those opportunities pass on by as we worry about our own lives, never giving a thought to what difficulties others may be facing or what needs they may have.  We may never know what happens in those lives after that moment.  What if it isn't only us that lets those moments go?  What if no one else reaches out to them even though we assume someone will?  

Whether we spend our days in a workplace, in the public, or at home, the most important thing needs to be representing Christ.  We are to be His reflection.  The way we treat others, the way we do business, the way we act in the grocery store line, the way we parent, the way we speak, the way we conduct ourselves while driving, the way we relate through social media are all chances to exercise wisdom.  The saying, "More of Jesus, less of me" should be our guide.  Each waking moment we have the privilege of walking hand in hand with our Savior.  If we remember He is beside us, maybe that will help us to keep in mind that whatever we choose to do should honor Him.  

I include myself in everything I have said above.  It is sometimes a struggle for me to reach out to those around me.  I have to pray for that reminder and strength.  The enemy is very good at continually whispering to me about the problems in my own life.  He loves for me to focus on myself because when I do I am not being mindful of the power of God's grace and mercy.  Only when my eyes are on Him do I understand the importance of choosing to honoring Him and blessing others.  

Everything we do is a choice of some kind.  What we fill our minds with, how we manage our time, and, most importantly, how we share Jesus with others, are all major selections that we make each and every day.  If we fail to choose wisely it hurts us and possibly others.  As we go through this week, let's exercise the option to choose wisdom in all we do and say.  May God guide and bless us all.  

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