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January 29, 2021 5:00 am
Communication is crazy even with our very best intentions are. Communication is often lacking is how can we address the issues of our day in person or online.
In a way that brings light, not healing and not molested welcome to this edition of living only a Living on the Edge features the Bible helping Christians live what Christians in this program we continue our series called social restoration. What about you were growing up for the things the government ruled the truth matter a lot of things but I wasn't trying to fall from time to time. Chip invites us on right so please ask Brian to share his message called social language is looking at why God's perspective what comes out of our mouth matter so much that you will be with us after the teaching to bring some extra insight right now. Let's join Ryan Ingram for his message from James chapter 30 or in a series called social restoration that we been wrestling with this. How do we experience social restoration in such a socially divided nation. How do we not just experience about how do we as followers of Jesus actually bring about in the midst of social injustice and unrest. We we began with looking at phase 1, that there is a distinction or distinctive mark of Christians, and that is this social distinction that social restoration begins when followers of Jesus embrace. There is no social distinction among followers of Jesus there is to be no social distinction there is to be no favoritism played no prejudice outworking no racism aloud among the people of God. It begins with us. We looked at phase 2 and social action. Such social restoration demands that followers of Jesus put their faith into social action. Do we want and were looking for.
The government needs to be fixed. Politicians need to, you know, change your address and certainly that's great.
This solution friends is the church of Jesus Christ, rising up and acting in faith in their Savior, to bring hope and justice to say enough is enough and to be the hands and feet of Jesus to bring mercy and justice to those in need, is that when we say were gonna live out our faith no more mere talk but were gonna walk the walk were looking at phase 3 and James is then going to shift his attention to our words and then their power and look at social language and if we look at social media, there's a lot of language going on is under all my goodness there is a lot of language, a lot of rhetoric, a lot of emotion and it's just like this onslaught. And James is going to say actually social restoration for us is when followers of Jesus we actually have to pay careful, careful attention to our words and our language to bring about that restoration. We pick it up in James chapter 3 verse one if you got your Bibles you can open up or you can, you know, open up your app on your phone. James begins this way and if you remember, it's it's a people that have undergone their own like scolded moments they've been persecuted they've been disenfranchising their their living in a world that's been turned upside down and he's he's helping pastor them through this and he says this is a funny way to begin. Not many of you should become teachers of an effective refrain today as we need more listeners and teachers we need to be learners only is not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers. Why now this is interesting because you know that those who we who teach will be judged more strictly that that as a teacher were Sgt. subject to greater or stricter judgment, actually before God we give account for every careless word that comes out of her mouth, words, words are many sin is not far behind proper process and then we have more judgment with others. In fact, I know every time I get up to speak.
I am being evaluated. Yet all you might sit down later go what you think of that soccer you might be sitting thinking right now. All right not show sure about this Ingram and we are under judgment and evaluation, and he says listen, not many of you should want to be teachers or those who are speaking out because there is this greater judgment is gonna come now. There was this desire to be a teacher. This I required because there is honor. There's prestige. There is a platform today. So many of us have a platform that many never had even 15 years ago your Instagram page by the way, you have to embrace you can either be a teacher learner and most of us are wanting to be informers and teachers says be on your guard because there is a stricter judgment. For those of us that teach by the way, every parent is a teacher for us as parents are role is to make sure that we shape our kids and help them understand Jesus and his ways understand what he values and how to walk with him you not off the hook. You are the primary disciple or of your kids and you can't outsource stats and where we would say were going to be the primary informers I wanted to watch movies that would help open our eyes and sat with one of my sons and we watched just mercy.
Great movie. By the way, I highly recommend it in my son's heart breaking over the evil and injustice and he's like an angry dad and wanted to help them understand that's righteous anger.
That's actually the right kind of anger that moves us to holy action. Well now he goes on to say we all stumble in many ways. Anyone who's never at fault in what they say is perfect like if you can keep a tight rein on your tongue if you can. Be careful what you think. If you if you never stumble on your words to say. Actually your entire life would be perfect able to keep their whole body in check, and here's what I say when it comes to social restoration and our language if were going to experience social restoration believers in Christ, we have to watch our words, we have to be aware of our words with be so careful about what we say and what we don't say how we say it often some communication isn't just what we say is not true, but it's what was received and we still defend things and I like why didn't mean it's I do this in marriage in my marriage. Not just any marriage. But my marriage I do not like why did me. That's but that's how it was received. I got to understand communication is bridging that gap and were called to be careful or watch her words and he and he actually says this watch your words, why, for they will guide. They direct your life but I know this sounds obvious, or a little like why would we ask this, but what exactly are words, what is that mean what one definition that I like. Says words are a communication whereby the mind finds its expression. I like that definition is a communication whereby the mind finds its expression. Here's a reason why when we think about our words, we often think about them as detached, like you're not a part of Esther.
This abstract thing and I salmon there out there in their the sixth and what he said is that your words are actually a part of you.
There's something that came from inside of you out of you. And so it cannot be detached from you and that's why we have to watch her words because they actually not only come from inside of us, but they direct our life. So the question is will how do we watch our words.
I think this is so incredibly important friends in this season of our history as a nation and as followers of Jesus, would you lean and in this moment is we have to do this well and wisely, to be those agents who bring love and grace to a hurting and broken world. So how do we watch our words well before you speak, stop and think.
I know it sounds like common sense but is not so common anymore.
Before you speak before you send that text before you send that email before you post on Instagram or Facebook that rents read before before you make that phone call, stop and think and I just want you to ask for questions. First question is it true is it true is it accurate you know we live in a world today where it's like, while just speaking my truth. I just gotta get this off my chest.
Let's really wrestle with is this accurate to what's going on. I want to sit down or sit with this just for a second because as followers of Jesus before we speak. We actually have to do the work of really understanding what it is that were regurgitating out to people and what we do often is. We take information in not evaluating the source of it and we just respond out an emotional frenzy yet stop and ask is it true, and then once we get to that we can do okay now. Now I'm able to respond instead of just react with lots reactors in our day-to-day.
We have to be as followers of Jesus responding wisely and well to the moment we ask is it true what I I once I figured out its truth is my truth. I'm going to say it will not hold on, there's another question. Not only is it true, is it helpful is this helping the conversation, or is this harmful see I can speak my truth to you and it may be my truth and it will not help the conversation move things forward, bring about healing or restoration or justice. It went may actually incite more harm and pain. Proverbs talks about this harsh word stirs up wrath, but a gentle word columns wrath like is helpful and then the way I'm doing is it helpful he says okay let's ask this question. Is it true, is it helpful is what I'm about to say going to bring about the bit in result is going to bring about reconciliation is not a bit bring about justice is it going to bring about healing is it going to bring about love and peace and then we got ask not only is it true, is it helpful, but is it right and you like Ingram. This isn't a time to be kind, don't you know what were 11 kindnesses dead. We gotta get to work. I hang on, you don't understand kindnesses.
We confuse niceness and kindness and kindness doesn't mean I just say whatever is nice to you, let him explain the difference. I'll give you a silly illustration. If you will, the silly illustration of this essay were out to dinner and you have a piece of food in your teeth if I'm nice to you and I look at you, I'm not gonna say anything about him. But to ignore it. I will let you go on your way because I don't want to make you feel uncomfortable or feel bad all that's nice but if I was kind. I got my skis now so sorry you got a little something here. You got got a little parsley here because I don't want you to walk around and smile and somebody else and be walking around with that on your face to kindness actually addresses things for the good of the other person we have to ask the question, is it true is this accurate it is it is it helpful in my adding to the conversation in my in my building up my helping as it careened just like being nice to you and I don't want to address something, but is it really kind to you is this going to be for your past and finally, this is really important. Have I truly listen before you speak, stop and think how I truly listen. Have I heard. Have I taken time before I reposted before I ran to really hear where someone's coming from and what's going on, friends, followers of Jesus we have far better listeners than question was the edge with an lien Ingram's teaching is from his serious social restoration right will be back with part two of his message.
In our next program chips here now with some thoughts about what you heard today before he gets to that. I hope you'll take a second to go online or tap share and encourage others to join us for this series to social restoration is complicated, even with the best of intentions, well-meaning people get themselves into trouble. So how do we make a difference and bring light not heat will these messages from Ryan Ingram bring a lot of clarity to the question. He looks at our current circumstances with the gospel vision of community, and provides biblical solutions for limited time, resources for social restoration are discounted and the MP3s are always free to order your copy or to send it to a friend visit us online at http://livingontheedge.org for additional information. Just give us a call at AAA 83336003. I'll be right back in just a minute to talk about some very specific application to this teaching by Pastor Ryan Ingram. But before I do I want to just say a word to those of us who want to make a difference who want to share some things with people we care about people that may even very much disagree with us a some of those people are in our own home were related to them. Some of those people are in our churches and were living in a world today where we have Christians that are in odds sociologically and theologically and with real regards to cultural issues. How do we bridge that gap. How do we come together, how do we have social restoration first in our families, and then in the church so we can be that light that healing agent that Jesus is called us to be.
I would suggest that you have to go to the root instead of look at the fruit. There's something behind the name calling and the prejudging and the putting people in categories even inside our families and in the booklet social restoration. Ryan has written a primer to help each one of us ask and answer the question what does God want to do with me and what kind of eyes. Do I need to look at others through in order to bring healing. We all had this issue and in this booklet. You then learn from Scripture how to begin to take the kind of steps that allow you to see people differently to see them the way God sees them to be a bridge builder instead of a divider. You have a tool that you can give to someone else that you agree with or disagree with that.
You can read it quickly and then have a good conversation over a cup of coffee and say you know something this is something that we can both agree on this is something we know God wants us as followers of Christ to follow and you know as we build bridges. Then we experience healing. Could I encourage you give us a call or go to the website will give it to you absolutely free. We want to put this in the hands of as many people as possible to begin to get to the root of the problem instead of constantly blaming one another with the fruit of the negativity that's happening in the church families and society. Go to the website or give us a call. Dave, could you give them that information that you two will not only is it a print copy but were also making this little booklet available as an e-book. Either way, you can choose a free copy when you go to your website. LivingontheEdge.org Special offers on the app or give us a call at AAA 83336003. We'd love to get it into your hands and then have you pass it on when you're done. It's a great little conversation starter with the bonus of God honoring solutions request your free copy of social firstname.lastname@example.org special offers on the app or by calling us at AAA 83336003. Hope you'll do it today as we wrap up today's message I want to go over little list that Ryan gave us that I think will help you and help me before we speak today before we post anything on social media. In fact, even before we sent out an email and let me just give you a couple reminders and let's let's practice this us really think about doing this today number one were going to have to interrupt ourselves on purpose. What what that means is going to have to get into the habit of expecting that the first thing on our mind is not what we really want to say or write okay this is a little thing you going to training and if you knew how many things go through my mind, and some of them I think are really right. Some I think are really funny, and boy, most of them. I'm glad I didn't say but just developing the habit where my first reaction. My first thought, I'm can email them.
I'm gonna say that I would oppose that you push the pause button second. It's can be very hard but helpful with family and friends just to slow down and consider before you post it before you say it before you write it to ask the questions that he gave us to ask question number one is what I'm saying true and accurate, and what I would add is are you sure question two is what I want to say helpful or harmful.
In other words is really going to help someone or am I just gonna stir the pot through gasoline on the fire feel real good about it for about 10 seconds and then realize what I done in about a minute later, question number three is what I want to say kind is it for their best.
I mean, that is a litmus test is it kind or is it attacking.
Is it sarcastic is it a put down.
Is it passive aggressive and then finally have. I truly listen to it. Actually understand what I want to respond to or am I reacting.
Here's the practice. If you will begin to pause and think before you speak, and if you will. Maybe even list those three question. Is it true, is it helpful is it kind and then have I listened, it will save you such heartache and here's the thing. It will protect the reputation of Christ. All of us have opened our Facebook and started scrolling down and seeing things that various Christians have said that make you cringe, don't they, and you say to yourself. Boy, if I was not a Christian and that's how Christians talk or attack or speak to or about other people. I would never want to be a Christian.
What I want you to know is that what comes out of your mouth has the power of life and death and we represent the king of kings and the Lord of lords, and he says to us.
Guard your heart and guard your tongue. Let every word be as it were, seasoned with salt, that it might give grace to those who hear. Let's do this today, just before we close. I want to say thanks to those of you who are giving regularly to the ministry of Living on the Edge you're making a huge difference helping other Christians live like Christians of your enjoying the benefits of Living on the Edge, but aren't yet on the team would you do that today. You can set up a recurring donation by calling us at AAA 83336003. Tapping the donate button or visiting us online at http://livingontheedge.org. Thanks for doing whatever the Lord leads you to do well for all of us here, this is Dave saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge