Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. Romans 14:19 (NIV)
This world is not a peaceful place. This world is filled with division and strife and acrimony of every kind. When will the destructive debate and angry finger pointing ever end? It is easy to get drawn into the conflict. It is alluring to join in the battle. One side is always right. The other side is clearly wrong. One side is good and has the best intentions. One side is evil and filled with dark and disturbing motives. Which side am I on? I’m always on the good side. My intentions are nothing but the best. Who is fooling who? That is a very good question to ask yourself. Yes, I know that it is a very good question to ask myself. Why is that? I so easily join the debate. I am so willing to be drawn into the battle. Winning becomes the goal. Destroying the thoughts and opinions of others who are so obviously misguided and deluded is the plan. Guess what. What? Nobody wins these destructive debates and angry conflicts. You are incorrect at this point. Yes, I suspected that. No person wins these destructive debates and angry conflicts. Now, you are correct. The devil and all his evil wins when people from different perspectives try to destroy each other with their words and actions. Now, you are on to something very important. What has happened to your ability to be my witness in the world when you engage in angry debate and ugly finger pointing? My ability to be your witness in the world vanishes in an instant. No one sees the light of your life flowing in and through me. No one sees your kindness and mercy and love through my life. All they see is an angry and combative, debate filled me. There is no joy in that. There is no hope and life in that. No, there is not. It is good that you see this angry and combative, debate filled world, that you live in, for what it is.
So, let me ask you a question. Go ahead, I’m listening. What do you want your life to be about? Do you want to join in debates and win conflicts or do you want to be a bright and shining witness for me in the world? Do you want to win arguments or bear fruit for my kingdom and glory? My answer to your questions is obvious. I want to be a bright and shining witness in the world that bears fruit for your kingdom and glory. Then leave the debating and arguing and finger pointing behind. Make every effort to do what leads to peace. Use your words to encourage and edify others. Love and lift others up with your words. Yes Lord, I will. That will be very good.
Lord, steer me clear of the lack of peace and harmony in this world. Free me from the nonstop destructive debating that goes on in society today. Help me to make every effort to do what leads to peace. Help me to encourage others with my words and actions. Amen
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