Just before the confrontation…

Here there BCU Family!

Typically, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or both. For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

  • Confrontation is a part of life —whether we are in the giving or the receiving end of the conversation.
  • In the time leading up to the conversation, it’s IMPERATIVE to guard your mind against negative, accusing thoughts about the person/situation with the help of the Lord. Otherwise, we build up a case based on emotion–and emotions lead to comments, tones and attitudes that are counterproductive and destructive to the relationship.
  • If we go into the conversation prayerfully, with forgiveness, humility and the heart to resolve the situation, that will typically disarm the individual, thus fostering an environment of understanding and healing.

Scripture references:

No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord (Isaiah 54:17).

But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? (James 2:20).

The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression (Proverbs 19:11).

I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me (Philippians 4:13).

Charity [love] suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; (I Corinthians 13:4-5).

Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it (1 Peter 3:11).

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God (Matthew 5:9).

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things (Philippians 4:8).

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee (Isaiah 26:3).

A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger (Proverbs 15:1).


So what are your thoughts on our topic-du-jour? What goes on in your mind when you’ve been offended and need to confront someone? Do you stick with the facts, or does the conversation take a emotional/personal turn? Please head to the comments section below and let’s chat some more!

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter , and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by! God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

2016 Loopback: Applying “The Golden Rule.”

Hey 👋🏾 there BCU Family!

As usual, you have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the post blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your the post.



HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

We praise God for the blessing of new mercies that are renewed daily and how those days brought us to 2017!  We pray God’s blessings for you now and in the days to come for a blessed and spiritually-enriched 2017.

So in our last post, I promised we’d do a reflection/count down type post and I’d like to make good on my word. As we go from December to January, we tend to think everything from the previous year “goes away”. It doesn’t. Whatever we went through, challenge or triumph, there are LESSONS God taught, and in the spirit of being a doer of the word (James 1), we need to recall those lessons in order to sustain us in the battles and walk us to victory. So this month, we’ll focus on a lesson learned in 2016, so we can apply it going forward. Let’s start with what the world calls “The Golden Rule”. I’ll call it what it is–the Word of God and it comes from Luke 6:31.

 “And as you would want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.” 

That’s easy to read and to do when we are being treated properly, but does that verse get trampled when we are not being treated well?

Case in point: With the help of God, whenever I have to contact a customer service rep, or it’s my turn to be waited on at the store, typically, I greet the person with a smile, how are you, et cetera. I understand it’s not easy dealing with the public all day, rude customers, shortages in inventory, people calling out–those things can effect your day, so I like to be the customer that brings some pleasantness, you know? And I thank God for that attitude—-that’s all Him. The thing is,  I EXPECT pleasantness back. Most of the time, I get wonderful pleasantness in return,  BUT there are many times that I do not.

The dry “hi”. The face like “why are you talking to me?” The non-responsive associate. The “yep”. My things being put in the bag haphazardly. Talking to their neighbor while cashing me out. Over talking me. Not answering my questions. Answering with an “I don’t know” (and won’t look unless you ask).  The putting down of a pen or change on the counter instead of in my hand! The list goes on!

The thoughts that run through my head as I seethe go something like this: “After the hard-earned money I’m plunking down?” “SERIOUSLY?!” “I don’t know who she THINKS she’s talking to in that tone!” “Why is he not answering?” “Did I NOT just greet YOU nicely?” I should put it back.” “I need to get the manager.” “What is your issue?”  And then, I want to respond in the same sharp tone, give a look that says, “I’m NOT the one”, Ask, “am I bothering you?” or loudly plop the pen back down on the counter in retaliation. How many of you have played something like  this scenario in your mind? How many have done it? Yep, me, too.

While we may be justified in feeling wronged for being mistreated, what does Luke 6:31 say again? And as you would want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise. In other words, our behavior must stay consistent with the Word of God that tells us to treat folks like WE would want, rather than how THEY treated us. I know this can be a tough one for the flesh, yet we need to be obedient to the Word of God. Why, you say? There are a lot of answers to that why, but let’s take a look at three reasons:

It’s taken care of: Mind you, any ill-treatment is WRONG…we know that, and more importantly God knows it. There is nothing that surprises Him, escapes His knowledge or memory. Because He is a righteous judge, He knows when, where and in what way to balance the scales.  Romans 12:19 says to avenge not ourselves, vengeance is mine, I will repay, saith the Lord. He’ll handle it. We’ve got His word on it.

Mercy and compassion: Our flesh may long to see someone “get it”, but we have to remember the unforgiving servant in Matthew 18. We talked forgiveness in previous posts, but the parable, Jesus tells us about a servant who owed his leader ten thousand talents. The servant could have never paid the money back, but asked for mercy and the debt was forgiven! That same servant turned around and found one of his friends that owed him 100 pence and demanded to be paid. The friend asked for mercy and rather than granting it, servant threw the friend PRISON until the debt was paid! There is a LOT wrong here, but see how he took matters into his own hands? He could not WAIT for his friend to “get it!”.

Well, word got back to the servant’s lord about what happened and servant was called out on his lack of pity and compassion —and then he was delivered to the tormentors till the debt was paid. Remember, though, that debt was IMPOSSIBLE to pay back. Jesus ends the parable with these words: So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if you do not forgive not from your heart, everyone his brother their tresspasses (Matthew 18:35). In other words, we do COUNTLESS things to offend God yet He has compassion, mercy and forgiveness on us. Imagine if He punished us the moment and every time we messed up? Man, I’d be delivered to the tormentors just like that servant! So looking at it that way, we need to exercise compassion, mercy and forgiveness as well. If we ask Him to help us, He will.

Confront as directed: In the event an incident needs to be escalated, or the Lord is leading you to confront the issue, it can be done in a way that gets the situation resolved, God is glorified and you don’t lose your cool or your witness. Nehemiah had to confront leaders who were wrongly taking advantage of their brethren. After calming down and thinking it over, Nehemiah rebuked the leaders, called them to a meeting and explained why the leaders were acting irresponsibly. Nehemiah 5:8 says..and they held their peace and found nothing to answer.  In fact, the leaders gave back what they took and praised God afterward! (More about Nehemiah 5 in an upcoming podcast). The thing is, Nehemiah handled the situation the way God wanted Him to and he was successful! If we do things God’s way, we will always be victorious! His ways are perfect! (Psalms 18:30).

BCU family, that was a tough one..I “wrassle” with getting in my feelings more often than I would like to! When we think about it, that need to want to “clapback” is a form of pride–the pride of life to be exact–and that deadly pride comes from the world, rather than  Father  (1 John 2:16).

The world and our flesh tells that we need to retaliate in tongue and deed so that person knows not to mess with us or will think twice about how they treat people. In essence it likely embarrasses the person, may enrage them to negatively respond to you, you retaliate again, so now,  it becomes a duel!

That exchange  may provide entertainment for the onlookers and temporary satisfaction for the flesh, but as that adrenaline wears off, you will have ruined your witness for Christ. And will have to reap the consequences of deliberately walking outside the Word of God. Is it worth it? Nay, I say. With the help of the Lord, let’s ask God to bless us to be swift to hear, slow to speak and slow to wrath. because the wrath of man does NOT work the righteousness. of God. (James 1:19-20). Amen? Amen!


Our question of the week is:

What area(s) of your life will you apply Luke 6:31 to? Please leave a comment below!


As a reminder, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and iTunes.

Thank you SO much for stopping by! God bless you, keep you and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

 

Love,

 

BCU

Speech Therapy | Forgiveness | Part 3 (final)

Hey BCU family!  As usual, you can enjoy the audio podcast (by clicking on the icon below) read the transcript notes or both! Either way, be encouraged by the Word of God and share this with a friend! God bless you!

 

 

So we talked offenders, offended and the PROPER format to take air a grievance. To the person directly >two or three witnesses>>and then the church. In that order and ONLY progress to the next level if the situation is not resolved from the previous step. We also learned that many have WRONGLY divided the Word about touching and agreeing and where two or three gathered. Jesus was speaking in terms of the proceedings of how the church would deal with the offender/offended and that as the church was carrying the resolution out according to God’s Word, whatever was binding or loosed on Earth was done in Heaven—and of course He was in the midst of these proceedings. NOW we get to Peter’s question.

21 Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?”
22 Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.”

Notice he offered up a number “7” which does have significance of completeness or finality. Jesus countered with “seventy times seven”. In addition to the number 7, the number “70” signifies ‘perfect spiritual order carried out with all spiritual power and significance’ (Bullinger, 1921, p.235). Therefore, 490, being the product of 70 x 7, signifies spiritual perfection of perfect order and completeness.

The interesting thing about this verse is that Jesus is not saying that we should forgive 490 times or simply a lot of times for that matter–we need to forgive to the point of spiritual perfection! We are required to forgive to the point were we no longer meditate on the hurt or have any anger or animosity towards the person who sinned against us. If you still talk about it with passion like it happened yesterday? You have a feeling of dread, remorse, bitterness, anger, hatred, vengeance, snide comments, retreat, murmuring, complaining to others—you have NOT forgiven the party.

Lest we think we have the all clear in this area, it’s a good idea to really examine our hearts, ask God to check your heart and to be open to the Word of God on the subject. In the last season of #SpeechTherapy (season 1),  we mentioned just like there are many containers of forgotten, old, ignored and overlooked things in our refrigerators sometimes, there are MANY things in the heart.

Jeremiah 17:9 says the heart is deceitful above ALL things and desperately wicked: who can know it?

Matthew 15:18-20(a) says, But those things which proceed OUT of the mouth comes from the HEART and they DEFILE a man, for out the heart proceeds evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things that defile a man. How you deal with forgiving tells about your hear‭t and relationship with God. Let’s go a little further into our text. 

23 Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants.
I liken this to an expense account of sorts. This servant likely had some buying/spending power. Obviously he misappropriated funds in this story and now the accounts were being reconciled.

24 And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents.

25 But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made.
Ten thousand talents was about 15 times an average person’s salary and would have taken 150,000 years to repay. The verse said the servant, wife, children and all that he had needed to be sold and payment made. That was no where NEAR enough to start the repayment process.

26 The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.

27 Then the lord (or the king) of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt.

A couple of things here:

The servant could have NEVER repaid the king. Mercifully, the king heard the servants cry, he loosed (we just talked about that loosed on earth/loosed in heaven) and told him he was free. The King took the loss and kept the servant. No talking about it, bringing it back up, side eyes in the kingdom, he loosed or completely forgave him.

Just like us, it would take 150,000 lifetimes to repay God for all the debt I ran up in sin! Every thought, word, action, act of disobedience, sins of omission, commission—in my B.C. (before Christ) and A.C. (after Christ) life—there is NO way I could repay—never! So just like that king, our King took the loss…our sins, and bore them on the cross, so we could be free and have eternal life. That thought alone is enough to give God praise for and something we should keep in mind when dealing with others.

28 But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest.

29 And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.

30 And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt.

Notice, this servant did not run into the friend, this guy goes to LOOK for his friend. On top of that he got physical by laying hands on– getting him by the throat AND demanded his money. The friend begged for mercy (just like the servant begged the king) and unlike the king, servant threw the fellow servant in JAIL!!

Let’s be clear, 100 pence was about 4 months salary, so this was no small amount of money, and he felt wronged. Let’s stop there. Feeling angry, hurt, betrayed, disappointed or let down is NOT WRONG. Apparently God gave us these emotions for various reasons—it’s how we react or control them that God is concerned with, as we strive to be more like Him AND be a witness to others. Offenses will come AND with various emotions with the offenses which aren’t always the most stable or reliable. So in these times, do we go with how we feel–we go with what the Word of God says. Ephesians 4:26 says to be angry and not sin…don’t let the sun go down on your wrath. In other words, we should not HOLD on to the offense for a long period of time because that’s how MANY things come out of our heart/mouths and actions or inaction that are NOT of God.

We won’t go to the the person
We will talk about them.
We will run away.
We won’t speak.
We will ignore.
We will murmur against the person.
We will tell others over and over how wronged we were.
We will sit down on God.
We will shut God out of speaking to us through prayer (which should be a two way conversation), the taught or preached word (I hope SHE heard that, or a exree-LOUD amen) and your Bible reading, Sometimes God has to “get you by the lapels” to let you know He’s talking to you! (God had been talking to me about a jive date I was about to go on—it took me TWO days to catch on), or allow a trial or series of situations that you finally have to come to Him and ask why. Lack of forgiveness hardens our heart to the point where we can’t hear God clearly. Sure, He may be blessing and keeping you—that’s His mercy and grace. While that mercy endures forever—it may not be extended to you forever—especially if we’ve been ignoring His voice.

Next, and obviously servant forgot he just was loosed from a HUGE debt. Do we forget what Christ did for us? And how He keeps doing it over and over? Even when we offend? Is our compassion limited, biased, divided? How many people have we her captive in our hearts, stopped speaking to, avoided, cursed in our minds because they trespassed us, when WE SIN! I didn’t say PRACTICE sinning, and maybe you didn’t did not against them, but we do sin. Yes, you do!
I John 1:8 says, “if we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
We may not be PRACTICING sin, but many of the things we mediate on, say (even if it’s an oops, it was still wrong), do, or even NOT do (I’m not apologizing, I’m not going to help her (when God told you to), I’m not going to tell the clerk he gave me an extra $10 change..that was a blessing—NO that was a TEST!) Sin. Respect of persons anyone? My brother brought up how pop singers of certain ethinicies are “sent to heaven” (that’s a different teaching)  on Facebook by “Christians” while other ethnicities are not talked about at all. That’s wrong. We can go round and round, but the deal is we can accumulate a massive debt of sin while we are here by not forgiving the people who wronged us. It’s not easy and our old nature won’t want to, but we HAVE to. If we love people like Jesus wants us to, we have to forgive.

31 So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done.

The servant was a poor witness of the mercy extended to him. How many Christians behave this way in front of families, friends and strangers while professions Christ?

32 Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me:

33 Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee?

Isn’t it amazing that we are great defense lawyers for ourselves and great prosecutors for others?

34 And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.

So this servants lack of judgment, mercy, compassion and forgiveness got him a one-way ticket to life in torment until all was paid up. 150,000 years worth.

Which of the servant’s attitudes do we most have? Forgiven and forgotten? Is that situation worth going to be delivered to the tormentors? Is that church member (and that may just be who they are—a church member is SEPARATE from a Holy spirit-filled Body of Christ member) neutralizing your relationship with Christ and taking you off your assignment. Do you NOT recall YOU are the CALLED according to HIS purpose? If you slack on your post in The Body of Christ, you can negatively impact the rest of The Body. Or those watching you. Moreover, if we stay stuck in that place of unforgiving, verse 35 says:

35 So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.”
People who have not forgiven are typically partial, bitter, wrathful, resentful, quarrelsome, (even in their minds) speak evil and have malice (see Ephesians 4:31). How does God allow any one practicing those characteristics to enter into the kingdom of Heaven? Do we consider eternity enough? Do we realize that we live this life to live again? Forever? Is what happens, albeit not nice, in this life worth torment, regret, and sorrow forever?

What if God was this unmerciful to us? Delivered us to the tormentor (enemy) for the 150,000 lifetimes worth? Yes He understands, but He doesn’t excuse. The Word is clear. When we don’t forgive, we are being disobedient and that’s a sin. Practicing sinners do not  make it into the Kingdom of Heaven. No situation is worth that.

So BCU family, with God’s help, let us ask the Lord to search our hearts to remove any traces or residue of unforgiveness toward anyone. Ask Him to check our motives or non-motives. Are we operating in our gifts and talents? Are we witnessing? How is our relationship/prayer life? How quick are we to rail on someone and forgive someone else. How many times do we say, “well you know I did not mean it”, or “I’m human” as a defense to offending, but we hold others captive because they “know better” or they should.

I pray this word blessed you and more that, brings you to a place in putting the Word in action–I know it did for ME! Whew!!! God bless you for tuning in, telling a friend, sharing commenting and subscribing–we at BlenCouragesU.com really appreciate you! Until the next time we’re together, #StayOnTheWall!

 

Love,

 

Blen