Tag Archives: good

Foundations


But as for me, it is good to be near God.
I have made the Sovereign LORD my refuge;
I will tell of all your deeds.
Psalms 73:28

In these postmodern times no one knows and few care about what is right and what is wrong. The characteristic ambiguity of postmodernism makes no distinction between black and white, all boundaries disappear and everything becomes a range of gray tones without limits. Gradually we can see how practices and customs that until now have always been considered sin, are now being accepted as normal for the sake of a misunderstood tolerance. The world, which has plunged into total confusion, would rather accept whatever comes its way so it does not have to bother to separate what should be from what should not be. Everything is accepted and taken for legitimate and nobody cares what is going on as long as all thoughts are focused on putting man at the center of the universe. No one seems concerned that values have become obsolete, but as soon as someone is affected by the vices of another, that someone becomes outraged and calls for justice.

Existentialism placed emotions above reason, the world accepted these ideas without objections and now we all suffer the consequences of living in a world of confusion and violence where tolerance becomes the cardinal virtue and the traditional scheme of values has lost relevance. The psalmist Asaph ends the psalm with a clear and firm statement: “But as for me, it is good to be near God.” Who can refute this truth? What about you? How close are you to God? What gives meaning to your life? Do you just go along with your emotions and your sensual pleasures or rely upon the word of God to make your decisions? Your actions are controlled by your scheme of values. And for you, Who is above all things, you or God? Calibrate your values against the word of God and you will know how close or far you are from Him. Only to God be the glory!

Consequences


Evil will never leave the house
of one who pays back evil for good.
Proverbs 17:13

One thing we can be certain of is that every action has its consequences. If the actions are good, the consequences will also be good. The opposite also applies. Bad behavior has bad consequences. It’s amazing that something as simple as this is overlooked when we are making decisions. One reason may be that we never stop to think before making a decision. A vast majority of our decisions are made in a split second without thoroughly analyzing and calculating the consequences that they will bring. Our natural reaction is to respond in kind with which we have been paid. ¿Defense mechanism or need for revenge? In addition, we have been trained to quickly make decisions and to not waste time to react appropriately. The mixture of these two things makes us continually incur in many mistakes.

There are two things we can do to reverse these dangerous trends that seek to control our life and take over our will. The first thing is to obey what the Lord Jesus Christ instructed us: “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.” This is possibly one of the commands most difficult to fulfill for our sinful nature is very strong in this regard. The other thing we can do is not rush to make decisions before they have been consulted with our heavenly Father and only after asking if we are doing something that pleases him, unless of course, the situation in question is a matter of life or death. In any case, we can only achieve these things under the guidance of the Holy Spirit and never on our own though it may seem that we are capable.

Let us then remember the Lord’s instructions and let us be guided by his Holy Spirit. Soon you will notice how good deeds will bring good consequences. Only to God be the glory!

Easy recipe?


Come, my children, listen to me;
I will teach you the fear of the LORD.
Whoever of you loves life
and desires to see many good days,
keep your tongue from evil
and your lips from telling lies.
Turn from evil and do good;
seek peace and pursue it.
Psalm 34:11-14

Here is a recipe for those who want to know what it is and live in the fear of the Lord. Although the recipe looks simple at first glance it is not so when we look at it in some detail. At first sight, the prescription consists of four ingredients: restrain the tongue from evil, refrain from deceitful lips, stay away from evil and do good and seek peace and pursue it. The first ingredient, restrain the tongue from evil is almost impossible to achieve in this world where people talk and talk without end. Many think that if they talk pretty using convoluted and fanciful words they will be counted for wise when in fact the opposite is true for the more you talk, the more mistakes you’ll make. Additionally we have that people love to grumble and complain about everything and just for nothing and finally, people delight in criticizing others, ignoring the plank that they have in their own eye. Also, we have the issue of lies. Of all the seeds that Satan has planted in the heart of man the one that has put more roots is the seed of deceit. Everybody makes use of lies thinking they will resolve their issues and all they achieve is to dig themselves deeper into the hole.

Departing from evil by itself would allow us to go a long way in our path toward spiritual maturity but we know it is not easy to depart from evil when we are surrounded by it on all sides and our flesh is weak. How much more difficult to do good! Departing from evil is hard work, doing good requires a titanic effort from us. Finally the search for peace is not an activity encoded in the human genome, by contrast, we argue and fight for even the smallest things. We are never satisfied until we impose our ideas and our views on the ideas and the criteria of others. If we coming up with any of the four ingredients is difficult, imagine how much more arduous and tenacious it will be to put all four ingredients together. Through our own efforts we will never achieve anything. Only the transforming power of the Holy Spirit working in our lives without restrictions will allow us to enjoy the advantages and benefits of living in the fear of the Lord. To God alone be the glory!

Despicable intrigues


Good people obtain favor from the LORD,
but he condemns those who devise wicked schemes.
Proverbs 12:2

Those who love to make use of intrigue are people who act covertly to satisfy their perverse desires to hurt and create conflicts. Some do it through the dissemination of innocent gossip that turns out to be not so innocent as his words are full of hatred and violence. Others dedicate their lives to making trouble and become intrigue professionals. Intrigues destroy friendships, peace and the sanity of those who are involved in them. Those who use the intrigue are people who seem outwardly calm and full of good intentions but actually are consumed inside by hate and bitterness even though they may not be aware of what is developing inside them. They are also people who seek and crave attention from others and the only way they can get it is by being bearers of imbroglio and confusion that are of interest only to the curious and idle.

The word of God tells us that those who act this way will receive God’s condemnation because he is not pleased at with this behavior. We must always be very careful about the words we use when we communicate with others. The opportunity to be misunderstood is always present and even though we try we can not always be sure that we have been fully understood. So if you have something to say about someone, it is best to go directly to the person concerned and not discuss our views with others because we may inadvertently  risk becoming intriguers. Always look for the good of others and not their harm, edification and not destruction. Thus we will be aligned with God’s will and not with the enemy’s plans. To God alone be the glory!

Today’s word for July 15, 2011


Those who are far from you will perish;
you destroy all who are unfaithful to you.
But as for me, it is good to be near God.
I have made the Sovereign LORD my refuge;
I will tell of all your deeds.
Psalm 73:27-28

Separated from God we are nothing and we can do nothing. Our Lord Jesus is the life and without life there is nothing left but death. Our Lord Jesus is the vine and we are the branches and no branch can bear fruit by itself, but must remain on the vine. Why walk separated from God if we know that away from him we can only find frustration, death, sorrow and pain? The Lord Jesus chose simple examples to explain these things to us so that we would all understand that we need to be close to him in order to live. However, many people hear these words and as soon as they stop listening they forget them. They are like the seed that the farmer scattered and fell among thorns. They fail to bear fruit because their cares and concerns are always more important than the cultivation of the word of God, which is what can bring solution to all their worries. Their scope is limited to the problem and they do not realize that Christ, the solution, is at hand.

Do not be so quick to identify these faults in others because it has happened to us all in a greater or lesser degree. What matters is that in God we have the solution and it is he who we must seek in prayer at all times and under all circumstances to maintain our soil good and prepared, so that when the seed of the Word of God s dropped, it can sprout, grow and produce a yield of thirty, sixty or a hundredfold. As the Lord Jesus: “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.” Again, let us stick close to the Lord, for separated from him we are nothing and we can do nothing. To God alone be the glory!

Today’s word for June 13, 2011


From the fruit of their lips people enjoy good things,
but the unfaithful have an appetite for violence.
Proverbs 13:2

I, for one believe that we should always be thinking and speaking positively. I do not go as far as to share the position of those who say that words repeated often end up becoming a reality as if a magic formula or a mantra could have power over creation. Positive thoughts help us to maintain positive attitudes. Negative thoughts, on the other hand can only hurt the heart. Same goes with the words we speak. The bad words, i.e. bad sayings or curse talk, can only bring evil to our lives. Good words, in turn, bring blessing upon us and upon those around us. A person who is constantly engaged in speaking ill of his neighbor will have to accept that people who listen to him will take him for someone who cannot be trusted with much information. The risk of this person misusing the information provided is too large. In contrast, a benign and caring person who always has a word of encouragement or recognition in their lips for those around him, will be sought by those who need good advice for their lives. His teachings and exhortations will always be in high demand and people will have a good opinion of him and he will enjoy the approval and good wishes of others.

Remember what the apostle Paul said in his letter to the Galatians: “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” What are you sowing with your thoughts and your conversation? Do you speak well of others, or do you express yourself bitterly of your neighbor? Do you think what you’re going to say before actually saying it? Are your words constructive or destructive? Do you speak always the truth? Is your everyday language suitable for all audiences or limited to mature audiences? Speak always well and you will enjoy good things from the fruit of your lips and you will grow in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man, as our incomparable Lord Jesus Christ, our example par excellence. To God alone be the glory!