Dear Father, you know this day has been filled with anxiety over family members needing healing and stressful situations. I also have been blessed beyond measure with the same family. Thank You that I can let go of all the worry and guilt - give it to Jesus, because when He died for me He took all of that stuff. Holy Spirit fill my mind and HEART with Your presence so I may hear Your Words, Your Truth, concerning the blog I’m about to write. I surrender all to You, Jesus and receive Your Love. May Your light and love shine through the words You give me. In Jesus Name I pray. Amen Colossians 4:2-6
New International Version (NIV)
2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. 4 Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. 5 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6 Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
Sunday’s Message was titled “DO THIS with Gentleness and Respect!”, referencing 1 Peter 3: 15, which states we should ALWAYS be prepared to tell others the reason for the HOPE we have, but do this with gentleness and respect. As I read and reread this Colossians passage, I’m convinced Paul (the author) is supporting the entire verse of 1 Peter 3: 15, not just the last part. I knew Sunday I would be responsible for writing the blog today, so I looked at Colossians and God spoke to me through Delton and the message and He nudged me “TO DO”.
As I read this passage for the first time Sunday I underlined the words and phrases that stuck out: DEVOTE, PRAYER, WATCHFUL, THANKFUL, that God may open a door for our message, proclaim the mystery of Christ, PRAY, proclaim it clearly as I should, make the most of every opportunity, always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. I was convicted to “prepare my answer”, that day, Sunday.
As I set out to write down my answer, to be prepared, to tell “the outsiders” of the HOPE I have, I looked over my notes from the Message. My notes were filled with all kinds of instructions for the heart. I love the heart! :) God made me a hopeful romantic! (I know its supposed to be hopeless, right?) Some of my notes included: we need to reset our hearts everyday several times to set apart Christ as Lord, it takes a while to kick out other gods from our hearts, and the final line - Do this with Jesus’ heart.
There was one more phrase that Delton mentioned in the Message, but it was not new to me. I read Francis Frangipane’s article, “Unoffendable” last fall for the 1st time and the Holy Spirit put it again on my heart last Friday - Sunday. The article is about trying to have an unoffendable heart, as Jesus did. My answer that I should proclaim should be with the unoffendable heart of Jesus - the utmost of gentleness and respect.
Here’s what I wrote:
I have hope and joy because I know this is not my Home. I know that I will mess up everyday, that there are so many things in this world that overwhelm me with sorrow, things that no one on this earth can fix, but because of Jesus I can surrender all mistakes, all hurt, shame, or guilt to my God. You see when Jesus died, He took on ALL those things for me so that I can let them go! He is so ready to do that for you too.
I know that I must always leave room for the Spirit’s prompting and this won’t be memorized for every situation, but I feel more prepared than I was before. I feel I could go on and on with this passage - I didn’t even say anything on being “full of grace” or “seasoned with salt”, or did I? The heart of Jesus certainly has all those things so maybe the final line in the Message notes encompasses it all:
DO this with Jesus’ HEART and lens!
What do you think? Are you prepared?