You may be tempted to isolate yourself from the world but we’re meant to live in it. People need to see the reality of Christ in you. The answer’s not isolation, it’s insulation.
Email. Internet. Video. Texting. Tablets. Smartphones. The list never ends, does it? As technology advances, real human connection becomes harder and harder. If we’re not careful, each new gadget can draw us further away from the family of believers God designed us to be.
If you want to experience a close community with other Christians, you must first escape the trap of superficiality and to develop tight bonds that will feed your soul and mature your spiritual family.
The quality that distinctively sets apart believers as followers of Jesus is not a pithy bumper sticker or a fish emblem dangling from a necklace or a gilded dove pinned on the lapel. These are only symbols of our faith. The true mark of a Christian is love.
Make a positive difference in someone’s life simply by giving a word of encouragement. Never underestimate the impact of affirming and uplifting words.
Never underestimate the power of friendship. Friendships give us comfort. They strengthen, nourish, and encourage us. They take the grind out of life.
There is something extra special about February. Valentine’s Day. Hearts and flowers. A fresh and needed reminder that there is still a heart-shaped vacuum in the human breast that only the three most wonderful words in the English language can fill.
Far from being harmless, grumbling poisons not only our minds but influences those around us. And being a joy-stealer is something that none of us have a right to be.
James encouraged us to prevent verbal fires from burning the forest around us. And yet, he gave no checklist, no tear-out sheet, and no three-step solution. Thankfully, the Bible isn’t silent about what we should and should not say.
In our image-conscious society, there is an enormous emphasis placed on appearing to be someone you’re not. Playing such a role is not just inauthentic; it also encourages us to keep others at a distance.
Give further thought to this. Ask God to open your lips and honour your words...but be careful! Once your missile hits the target, you’ll become totally dissatisfied with your former life as an earthbound, secret-service saint.
Sometimes it's easy for Christians to feel a little smug—to look down our pious noses and sigh in pharisaical tones, "I'm a Christian. I would never do that." Not so fast, my friend. You don't want to hear this, but there's not all that much difference between "us" and "them."