Inner Beauty

 1 Peter 3:1-6

 

What a beautiful outfit; adorned by trust in God.   Whenever I consider  godly lives I think of my mother.  She was a very intelligent, cultured woman who loved God with all her heart, soul, mind, strength and her neighbor as herself.  She loved to believe God and His Word.  She didn’t question the Word.  To her, God was really God.  He could do more than we could ever ask or think.  He was the God of the impossible.  She was adorned by trust in God.

I love the memories I have of her.  As a child I would come rushing into the room and find her quite often in one of two postures.  Either she was sitting in a chair reading her Bible or she was on her knees in prayer.  Those images made an indelible impression upon my soul.  She was adorned by trust in God.

She had a quiet, rock solid faith.  She did not parade her faith.  She simply exercised it daily.  To be with her was to sense that the current ran deep.  She loved the Lord so sincerely that she would not consider doing anything that might bring Him grief.  She trusted God with her family, her future, and her faith.  She was adorned by trust in God.

She was an attractive woman.  Many who look at her picture comment about her beauty.  The beauty of the human form was not all that people who knew her saw.  Her outward beautify was not what those who barely knew her saw but did not comprehend.  She was adorned by trust in God.

By Dr. Gayle Woods

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God Is Our Strength

Psalm 71:14-19

If God is our strength then this suggests we have no strength of our own.

I got into a lot of fights in grade school.  I don’t remember ever losing a fight.  Neither do I remember ever starting a fight.  On one occasion, however, I was waiting for someone to fight.  I don’t remember the boy or the reason.

It was at the end of the alley that went behind our house.  I waited until I saw him coming and stepped out to confront the boy.  Before I could make my opening address I noticed an older girl crossing the street toward us.  She said, “If you touch my brother I will beat you up.”

I had always been raised to respect women.  An unspoken rule of our family was that you never laid a hand on someone of the opposite gender.  I was an obedient son. I backed away and decided that the wrong did not need to be made right in this case.

I am confident I would have had an undefeated record after the intended fight.  What I didn’t consider was that the boy would be relying on a greater strength than he possessed.

Many times we are accosted by difficult circumstances, opposing forces, and evil intentions.  In those times our fears will be calmed in the assurance that it is not in our strength that we trust, but in that of our divine Protector.

By Dr. Gayle Woods

 

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When to Keep Quiet

Learn to be quiet:

  1. When you are angry – Proverbs 14:7 “A quick-tempered person does foolish things, and the one who devises evil schemes is hated.”
  2. When you don’t have all the facts – Proverbs 18:13 “To answer before listening—that is folly and shame.”
  3. When you haven’t verified the story – Deuteronomy 17:6 On the testimony of two or three witnesses a person is to be put to death, but no one is to be put to death on the testimony of only one witness.
  4. When your words might offend a weaker brother – 1 Corinthians 8:11 11 So this weak brother or sister, for whom Christ died, is destroyed by your knowledge.
  5. When your words will be a poor reflection of the Lord or your friends and family – 1 Peter 2:21-23 21 To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.22 He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.23 When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly.
  6. When you are tempted to joke about sin – Proverbs 14:9 Fools mock at making amends for sin, but goodwill is found among the upright.
  7. When you would be ashamed of your words later – Proverbs 8:8 All the words of my mouth are just; none of them is crooked or perverse.
  8. When you are tempted to make light of holy things-Ecclesiastes 5:2 Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few.
  9. When your words might give the wrong impression – Proverbs 17:27 The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint,and whoever has understanding is even-tempered.
  10. When the matter is none of your business – Proverbs 14:10 Each heart knows its own bitterness,and no one else can share its joy.
  11. When you are tempted to tell an outright lie – Proverbs 4:24 Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips.
  12. When your words might damage someone’s reputation – Proverbs 16:23 The hearts of the wise make their mouths prudent, and their lips promote instruction.
  13. When your words might destroy a friendship – Proverbs 25:25 Like cold water to a weary soul is good news from a distant land.
  14. When you are feeling critical – James 3:9 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness.
  15. When you are emotionally involved and can’t speak without yelling – Proverbs 25:28 Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks self-control.
  16. When it is time to listen – Proverbs 13:1 A wise son heeds his father’s instruction,but a mocker does not respond to rebukes.
  17. When you may have to eat your words later – Proverbs 18:21 The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.
  18. When you have already said it more than one time (then it becomes nagging) – Proverbs 19:13 A foolish child is a father’s ruin, and a quarrelsome wife is like the constant dripping of a leaky roof.
  19. When you are tempted to flatter a wicked person – Proverbs 24:21 Fear the Lord and the king, my son, and do not join with rebellious officials,
  20. When you are supposed to be working instead – Proverbs 14:23 Proverbs 14:23

Proverbs 21:23 Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.

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