Friday Coffee with PJ

Well, I have already had my Friday morning coffee (eating breakfast out means more coffee than I probably should drink!) ... and you probably have finished yours. So ... without the coffee ... here are a couple of thoughts for your day.

1. I just LOVE the Old Testament book of wisdom, Proverbs. In fact the title literally means "instead of - pro" and "words - verb") ... so you put them together and a proverb is "instead of words." In essence a proverb offers up much wisdom in few words. And if you have done much reading in this book, you know its true. For example, one of my favorite proverbs is 10:19 which reads, "When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent." Now that is RIGHT ON! Far too often I have gotten myself into trouble by moving my jaws before engaging my brain! More of us could stand to listen more and talk less! Another of my favorite proverbs is 25:17: "Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor's house, lest he have his fill of you and hate you."  Ouch! So often we think that we are God's gift to those around us and when we live life with that mindset, we prove to be nothing like a gift. An annoyance yes! But a gift no! Finally, there's 27:2: "Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; a stranger, and not your own lips." This is the practice of a truly humble person. For one who is humble does not care if anyone notices his efforts. All that matters to the humble is that God notices!  

2. As a pastor, across the years (and I have been at it over 35 now!) I have received many calls, emails, letters (that's snail mail for some of you who don't remember ever receiving one), etc. from missionary candidates. Many were young. Most were passionate. All were in need .... of prayer and of financial support. In the vast majority of cases, I tried to encourage all of them while at the same time saying, "our church's mission's plate is already full." Certainly a "talk" they had been given often. Now ... I am guessing that one of the main reasons that missionaries struggle so much to raise their needed support is that far too many Christians do not practice "self-denial giving." And just what is that? Click here to find out! After I read the article, I am thinking about the article's implications for the church I am privileged to lead. Hmm....more o that later! Until then . . . 

Thanks for stopping by . . . 


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