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13/07/2022 03:00 - 14/07/2022 02:00

"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen" - Ephesians 4: 29 (NIV). 

The Apostle Paul wrote his letter to the believers in the city of Ephesus with a view to help them mature in Christ. He dwells on personal relations among members and points out that there talk should be positive, emphasising the point of "building each other up"!

Anyone of us might have come across someone easily given to negative talk. Or let's call it care less talk whose aim is nothing but to pull others down. The person who engages in such talk might have personal issues frustrating him. However, rather than deal with those issues, projects that bitterness on to others.

No one, if any, enjoys visiting someone who specialises in negative talk, except the one who is equally frustrated and perhaps might take comfort when he is not the target. There are negative talkers who have nothing good to say about anyone- aside from themselves! But be aware and do not fall under that guise as they pile abuse on someone else. The day you upset them, or even just disappear from their view for a period, then you are easily the next choice of attack.

There is little you can learn from negative talkers other than sucking you into their poison. This is why Paul felt it important to urge believers that when we meet we should all focus on talk that builds each other up than puts others down. It is that talk which then sparks our energy to do good, serving and extending the kingdom of God!

Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I pray that my tongue may be uplifting of others and not pull others down, this I pray in Jesus's name.

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    “The LORD will send rain at the proper time from his rich treasury in the heavens and will bless all the work you do. You will lend to many nations, but you will never need to borrow from them” – (Deuteronomy 28:2).

    Every now and then one chances upon someone despising the importance of being enterprising. To some being enterprising can be equated to the love of money and it’s pitfalls (1 Tim 6:10). Others see it as being overtly worldly. Yet, far from it, being enterprising is clearly an avenue God has given believers to raise resources for their well-being and promotion of the rich Gospel.

    The Bible is full of enterprising characters who were used mightily of God. Abraham was apparently a good rancher that he “become very wealthy in livestock and in silver and gold” (Gen 13:2). Job was hated by Satan who sought to destroy him because “He owned 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 teams of oxen, and 500 female donkeys. He also had many servants. He was, in fact, the richest person in that entire area” (Job 1:3).

    The Lord Jesus Christ was born and raised in the house of Joseph, the carpenter (Mathew 13:55). Carpenters do not create works of beauty to donate for free. To prosper they must run sustainable enterprises which pay taxes and make profit. The Apostle Paul would often rely on enterprising people to support him in his ministry. One of his worthy converts “was a woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth. She was a worshiper of God (Acts 16:14).

    Though Paul was a law don once he went to the mission field, other than cling to his titles by burdening his hosts he often dabbled in tent making to support himself. In Corinth he teamed up with an amazing couple, Priscilla and Aquila, and “because he was a tentmaker as they were, he stayed and worked with them” (Acts 18:3). This couple run a successful tent making business that enabled them support mission work.

    And then of course, there is the noble woman of character, as told in Proverbs 31, who “selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings.. She sees that her trading is profitable…She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes (vv 13-25).

    When the body of believers is filled with such enterprising people it generates resources important to sustain God’s work. Further, the work of God is then supported without being dependent on sources that might compromise the mission, as sometimes we see! Be enterprising!

    Prayer for today: Lord father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, you who has given us the gift of enterprise, today I pray to use this gift to take care of my needs and support the expansion of your kingdom on earth, this I pray in Jesus’ Name.