Closing the Gap 4.27.18

Week 16 “Live in Harmony with One Another”

Day 5

Pray:

Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.

Read:

Romans 12:18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

Reflect:

The Bible describes reality and prescribes reality-based thinking and living.  It is no surprise, then, that Paul was a realist. He understood that God is ultimate reality.  He knew that the gospel was the real power of God to change lives and to bring men and women into relationship with God.  So, as important and beautiful as harmony with others is, it is not always possible. It takes two to build a relationship, but it only takes one to break it.  Peace with everyone cannot be the goal because it is not something we have control over. The goal in all relationships must be the glory of God revealed in faithfulness to God.  You can control whether or not you are faithful in thought and deed.  You cannot control all the outcomes of your faithfulness.  Never mind that you will not always be faithful, the point is that you are oriented that way.  Faithfulness, not fruitfulness, is your calling. God determines the fruit that will result from your faithfulness. “Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful” (1 Cor. 4:2).  You have been entrusted with the gospel and with the opportunity to live out the gospel in your life. What God requires of you related to that trust (and everything else he has given) is that you be found faithful.  You may desperately want peace with someone in your life. You may believe that if you could just do more, pray more, give more, then surely harmony would result. By all means, do all you can do to have peace with others, as long as it is done within the boundaries of faithfulness to God.  As far as possible, as much as it depends on you, live at peace with others. Of course, the implication is that peace is not always possible because it doesn’t just depend on you. Set your heart and set your habits on faithfulness. This is what God requires from you. While faithfulness on your part will not guarantee your favored outcomes, it will guarantee God’s favor in your life.  Live in harmony when you can; live faithfully always.

Pray:

(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.

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