2021 Fast Day Seventeen

Day #17

James 3:13-16Do you want to be counted wise, to build a reputation for wisdom? Here’s what you do: Live well, live wisely, live humbly. It’s the way you live, not the way you talk, that counts. Mean-spirited ambition isn’t wisdom. Boasting that you are wise isn’t wisdom. Twisting the truth to make yourselves sound wise isn’t wisdom. It’s the furthest thing from wisdom—it’s animal cunning, devilish conniving. Whenever you’re trying to look better than others or get the better of others, things fall apart and everyone ends up at the others’ throats.”

If you didn’t understand before why we chose the short book of James to be the derivative for our time of devotion, you probably do now.  Do we even need to elaborate on these 3 verses?  Enough said.  Since I was a teenager, I have always incorporated a cry for wisdom as part of my daily prayer, “Lord, make me wise beyond my years.”

One of my favorite learning and teaching tools is to explain what something is NOT.  It really helps on topics that are as vast as wisdom, to educate myself on what NOT do to.  Let’s dig in because last time I checked, no one aspires to be ignorant.  Wisdom defined, is the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgement.  If you want to be counted wise and build a reputation for wisdom…here’s how NOT to do it.

  • Do NOT operate with mean-spirited ambition ✔️

  • Do NOT boast that you are wise ✔️

  • Do NOT twist the truth ✔️

  • Do NOT try to look better than others ✔️

Consecration: Self-Proclamation

If we allow the Word to work us and commit to working the Word…we could get ourselves all the way together!  Yesterday we consecrated poor self-talk.  Today we are consecrating self-proclamation.  Need me to break that down for you? Pet peeve – you are in a conversation with a friend and they have to one-up you.  They’ve been there, done that, and designed the t-shirt, not just bought it.  Don’t be that person.  Secondly, the conversation doesn’t always have to be about you.  It doesn’t make you any lesser of a person or less important to just listen. It’s not always about us.  Let’s be ok with that.  Spend more time today celebrating and acknowledging the good in others.  One of my favorite things to do in my whole entire life is to call to the goodness in others. To make them aware of some beautiful quality that they may or may not recognize they have.  Compliment someone, thank someone, affirm someone God places in your path today.