Monday, July 16, 2012

July 16 - The Right Words at the Right Time

Today's Reading:
Ezekiel 29:1-30:26
Matthew 15:29-16:12
Proverbs 15:21-30

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Focus Verses:
Proverbs 15:21-23

21 Folly brings joy to one who has no sense, but whoever has understanding keeps a straight course. 22 Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed. 23 A person finds joy in giving an apt reply—and how good is a timely word!

Making sound decisions and charting a straight course isn't easy. The counsel of wise friends is a big help in navigating the twists and turns of life. It's good to get advice from a variety of friends because each of their differing perspectives temper the others. A plan is more likely to succeed if it is framed and discussed and critiqued by a number of thoughtful people. Even the interpretation and application of scriptural principles are best understood and applied in the context of community.

Response and Action:
When making plans, I will seek the counsel of others who have demonstrated wisdom and success in their own lives. I will ask God for wisdom and direction. In order to make sound decisions, I will prayerfully consider the counsel and opinions of godly friends who care about me and have proved themselves to be prudent in their own affairs. I will seek guidance from the Scriptures in the context of Christian community.

O God, show me your ways. Guide me in your truth and teach me. Help me to seek you first in all things. Grant me wisdom and insight for life. Bring good and wise friends into my life. Give me insight and understanding as I read the scriptures. Help me to trust in you with all my heart and not depend on my own limited understanding. Help me to acknowledge you in all my ways, and show me the straight and wise paths to follow. Through Christ, I pray. Amen.

Spiritual Formation Verses: James 1:4-5
4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

The Spirit of the Disciplines
by Dallas Willard

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