I was reading James 3 this morning and the end of the chapter talks about wisdom. Wisdom from Jesus that is connected to good & humility, and “wisdom” that comes out of our selfish nature. I often find myself reminded that without Jesus I am very selfish. Verse 14 talks about not denying the truth when you see there is envy or selfish ambition in your heart. To me that is telling me to acknowledge it and deal with it. Deal with envy. Deal with selfishness. Making it about me keeps me from being humble & from the wisdom that comes from Jesus. I like how verse 17 lays it out, “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy & good fruit, impartial, sincere.”
What is wisdom from heaven? The list given is unachievable outside of a relationship with Jesus. Without recognizing that I am incapable of reaching those things unless God performs a miracle in my heart and life. It requires effort on my part, I need to be watching for what Jesus is up to. What is Jesus asking me to do? What is Jesus doing around me, where I can join him? As I was reading thru verse 17 I know that I am called to work on being full of mercy and impartial. Being merciful and impartial go together, learning to love like Jesus loves means not separating out who I will be nice to, show mercy to, show the love of Jesus. It is easy to show mercy to those who are easy to love, to those who have not wronged me, to those who are like me but yet Jesus is calling me, calling His followers, to love all of those around us.
The holidays bring with it extra opportunities to put love into action. When the opportunity is there, I need to simply take action, making it more than just words. Will you join me?
We talked about opportunities to be compassionate last week (click here to read it). With Halloween and Harvest Parties coming up is there something this week you can do specifically to reach out to your community? What about with Thanksgiving and Christmas coming up? Who are you called to show compassion and mercy to? What can you do to show compassion and mercy?
Today…..learning to follow, listen and obey; trusting in the ONE who loves me and HE loves you too.
Visual reminders help me remember what I am learning, I have a free 8×11 of James 3:17 available to download & print out.
DOWNLOAD HERE: James317FullPage
Scripture quotations taken from the The Holy Bible, New International Version
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