I'm studying James this summer. It is a great book chock full of so many things I would like to get right. So this morning I'm happily reading along and then,
But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and good deeds. It shows no partiality and is always sincere. And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of goodness.
Now I'm looking at these verses and I'm thinking I got trouble with a capital T. I can usually feel the days my reading will get specifically challenged. Satan loves trying to whack me in the knees with exactly what I just vowed to God I would get right. To bolster my resolve, I read it several times and took off for the day in prayer.
Work went smoothly most of the day. So far so good. Days now are somber and quiet. In the struggling economy, we are particularly hard hit. We have gargantuan problems to solve. I am not in charge and those in charge are not necessarily decisive or people of action. We have been thinking about the problems too long in my opinion. My challenge: Keep my place. Support. Be patient. Pray. Be respectful. Should be easy. Except there are days I want to shake someone and scream, Let's just get on with it. Do something!
Anyway, Satan lurked in the background until mid-afternoon when I typed a letter for my boss intended to go to some people he feels aren't doing enough to help with the situation. Nero Fiddles While Rome Burns. Oh my goodness. James, remember the verses, pray, pray harder.
I typed the letter thinking this is a mirror of us. It made me really frustrated so guess what I did. I copied the letter and edited it so instead of pointing the finger at someone else, it brought the focus right back to us or more pointedly him. Yep, the message was pretty clear. I printed it, I prayed, I hand wrote an encouraging note at the bottom. I let it sit at my desk for a while to "cool off" and then I laid it on his desk. Done.
But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure.
Were my motives pure? No.
It is also peace loving.
Do I want to cause discomfort to spur them to action? Yes.
Gentle at all times.
Could I have expressed my feelings in a different way? Probably.
Willing to yield to others.
I am not in charge. God will take care of this. Not me.
It is full of mercy and good deeds.
Did my action encourage or bring down?
Well I tried to encourage. I doubt it was received that way.
It shows no partiality is always sincere.
I was sincere, but I didn't choose a good method.
And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of goodness.
I'm not feeling very good right now. First thing in the morning, I need to absorb these verses again and then have a heart-to-heart with my boss. In case that sounds odd, my boss is also my dad. Yeah, I know that's a whole other dimension I just goofed up. I'll keep you posted.