Thursday, February 19th

Thursday, February 19th

In the same way, encourage the young men to live wisely. And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching. Teach the truth so that your teaching can’t be criticized. Then those who oppose us will be ashamed and have nothing bad to say about us. Titus 2:6-8

Remind the believers to submit to the government and its officers. They should be obedient, always ready to do what is good. They must not slander anyone and must avoid quarreling. Instead, they should be gentle and show true humility to everyone. Once we, too, were foolish and disobedient. We were misled and became slaves to many lusts and pleasures. Our lives were full of evil and envy, and we hated each other. But—When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit. He generously poured out the Spirit upon us through Jesus Christ our Savior. Titus 3:1-6

Successful living is significantly undermined when we use worldy ways of communicating to deal with the challenges the world brings to our faith. Certainly Daniel's faith was challenged over and over again as he sought to live out his faith in a foreign culture. Chapter one of Daniel has given us a clear and powerful example of the kind of communication we need to use in our dealing with people of the world who come up against our faith. Throughout the book of Daniel we see the results of Daniel approach. It is Daniel's approach to relationships and communication that keeps him in a position of influence for the long haul. But his approach is also the key to the impact he had on the various kings he served that helped bring about their response of faith to the one true God. The two passages above bring additional insight into the kind of relationships and communication we need if our lives are going have the impact God desires us to have.

Lord, I confess that self gets in the way far too often. It keeps me from being faithful at times to the convictions I know are right and true. But it also messes up my attempts to be faithful to my convictions when I react to those who react to my convictions. Forgive me, cleanse me, and change me, Lord. Come to me in a fresh way Holy Spirit and so wash over my being that my heart and life are permeated by gentleness, humility, kindness, and love. Lord, transform me into one who exists for you, abides in you, and is used by you to touch and bless the world for the sake of your kingdom and glory.

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