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Posts Tagged ‘reputation’

verse 32: “He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, And he who rules his spirit, than he who captures a city.”

What’s the difference between an electric range oven and a gas range oven, besides the obvious power source? Speed of heat. You see, you turn on a gas range and POOF, instant flame, instant heat. You turn on an electric range, and it takes a little while for the eye on the stove to come to heating temperature. In today’s world, more people are like gas ranges than electric ranges. Instant everything; they want instant news, instant results, and sometimes reactions are instant.

Solomon was saying that for one who can control their temper and can maintain reign over spirit, it is they who are better than the mightiest soldier who could capture a city. Sometimes, we only have one chance to make a first impression; sometimes, it can take one instant of lost control to ruin a lifetime’s reputation.

The story goes that a preacher had two clear jars on his pulpit as an object lesson for his congregation; both had liquid in them. Both liquids look yellowish, but that’s all the casual observer could see from the pews. Only after the jars were tipped over was it revealed that one contained honey…and the other contained vinegar. The preacher’s point was that you don’t know how people will react until they are…upset.

When there are trying times (and there will be!), pray to God to give you that control you need. After all, He might be using that moment to test if you are honey or vinegar….both look the same from a distance, but oh how different they are!

Have a blessed day!

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Proverbs 2:7-10

verse 7: “He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity,”

I have a footnote in my Ryrie Bible that states “Wisdom is God-given, not the result of mere human effort or ability (cf 1 Kings 3:ff; James 1:5).” We need to pursue wisdom, but it is God who gives it!

Maybe it’s because of the recent study I went through on the armor of God, but the word “shield” jumped out at me here. There have been several famous celebrities in the news in recent years whose formerly stellar reputations have been shattered due to one moment of bad judgment. Yes, if you seek God’s forgiveness and repent, He will forgive you. You still have to rebuild the trust others had in you, because it had been hurt. Continually walking in integrity isn’t easy, but it is well worth it.

I have a fellow church member who is an avid runner. Whenever I made it to the track, I always…always saw him there, just loping like a deer, passing me, and making his speed look easy! I sometimes thought, you know, he could afford to take a day or two off…he’s in great shape, a missed day or two wouldn’t hurt him! But then I realize why he keeps doing his routine, day after day; the continual discipline of maintaining the regimen keeps him in good shape. That’s the same way with integrity: continually walking in integrity preserves your reputation, and God Himself becomes a shield to you in protecting you as well. But you’ve got to walk the walk!

Have a blessed day!

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Verse 4: “lest if any Macedonians come with me and find you unprepared, we (not to speak of you) should be put to shame by this confidence.”

Paul was reminding the Corinthians that it was “put up” time (no shut up here!). He had boasted of the Corinthians and their zeal to give; now was the time for a collection to be made for the saints in Jerusalem. Paul reminded them of the shame that would happen if any from Macedonia came with him, after all that had been said of the Corinthian church, and they found the Corinthian Christians to be “not up to their reputation”.

Have you ever let anyone down? Everyone has had disappointments in their lives. People are human, and everyone, no matter how hard he or she tries, eventually lets someone down. But God never lets you down. He may say no, or He may say wait, but He is always faithful. Case in point I have to share: I have had a difficult situation on the project I’m on at work. We had a demonstration of our project, and some manager make disparaging remarks (not the customer, mind you, but a third party). We’ve all been on edge with deadlines, our technical lead (a very intelligent leader) has been very ill and doing his job and the project manager’s, and the situation looked to blow up in our faces the next day (today). I prayed on the way to work, knowing that the God of today is already in tomorrow, that He was already there, and prayed for His deliverance of this situation. Not only did God calm the situation down, but relationships were mended, and even the tech lead had good news from his doctor and CT scan results. I couldn’t help but praise God on the way home (and yes, I was cranking “Let There Be Praise” by Sandi Patti about 5 times in a row on the drive home!)

God is good, all the time. No matter how dark or deep the situation is, He lives up to His reputation. In your deepest need, turn to Jesus!

Have a blessed day!

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verse 14: “For if in anything I have boasted to him about you, I was not put to shame; but as we spoke all things to you in truth, so also our boasting before Titus proved to be the truth.”

“You are just like your father described you!” Or, imagine a statement much like that one…it could’ve been your mother who described you, or your best friend. It’s nice to have a positive reputation, and to be able to live up to it. There is a feeling of satisfaction when someone compliments you, because you met or exceeded expectations that were communicated to the complimenter by someone else. It can also be a substantial responsibility.

It appears that the Corinthians’ “best” was shown to Titus when he visited them, and Titus told Paul of this. There is an old cliche that states: “you only have one chance to make a first impression.” As ambassadors for Christ, we need to remember that every day. Yes, we are human; no, I’m not saying put on a fake front, but we need to die to self and live for Christ in all we do every day. I have said this before and I’ll say it again…you may be the only Jesus someone sees today; let them see Him in you.

I like to remember Psalm 34:2 “My soul shall make its boast in the Lord; The humble shall hear it and rejoice.”

Have a blessed day!

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