The book of Ephesians talks an awful lot about how we are to live, act, behave and respond to God. And yet, in reality, the principles are not easily lived out. I have to purpose myself to "put off falsehood and speak truthfully to my neighbors." I have to really work at "in my anger do not sin." And there is one of the most difficult for me, "do not let any unwholesome talk come out of my mouth..."
We are almost taught in our American culture to "judge" everyone. Sports announcers, coaches, teachers, t.v. shows - everywhere we look we watch and learn how to judge folks. I do it and I regret it, most of the time. In our home, we are trying to gently remind one another that if we don't have something good to say, than zip it! My younger son points out this ugliness in me, more often than I'd like. But I am getting better.
The area in Ephesians that gets to me the most is Eph. 4:29-32. Paul talks about my sassy mouth, how I can grieve the Holy Spirit, and how I must "rid myself of all bitterness, rage and anger, and brawling (though, I don't really brawl much), slander and every form of malice." Ending with the reminder of "being kind and compassionate, while forgiving everyone."
I have come a long way in my walk with Christ and have a long way to go until I lay my head down at night and praise Him for a perfect day. Until then, I will press on with prayers of praise, prayers of repentance and prayers for those I love dearly.
To each their own? I think is a bunch of pseudo counseling babble. NO! Not to each their own. Everyone impacts the people around them. Whether it's through responding to a problem, driving on icy roads, or telling someone you'll pray and forgetting them moment you walk away. No, we are created at such a time as this to impact the people around us and show them Christ in the flesh. Not a perfect version, of course. But one that is kind, is forgiving, is repentant when we mess up and is admittedly on the road to Christ.
I tire of seeing families sit at a restaurant and each person on their cell phone. I tire of myself when I have a few moments standing in line at Meijer, grabbing my phone to check something. Who do I think I am? I don't have too much that is urgent in my day. When I zone out on my phone, I miss the opportunity to make small talk with the person next to me. Remember small talk? I love it. I love blessing someone verbally around me. I love especially blessing an elderly woman by commented on how pretty her hair is.
I don't know about you and what you may be personally working on. But keep the faith! Keep working on your temple. Keep working on being kind and not snarky. Keep good people around you to slap you back to reality if you veer too far. "Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us." Surround yourself with the Word and godly people, today.