Sunday, August 17, 2014

Living a Full life

I Peter 3:10 “People who want to live a full life and enjoy good days
must keep their tongues from saying evil things,
and their lips from speaking deceitful things.
11 They must turn away from evil and do good.
They must seek peace and pursue it.
12 The Lord’s eyes are on those who do what he approves.
His ears hear their prayer.
The Lord confronts those who do evil.”

People search the ends of the world to try and find happiness. Everyone desires to live a long full life and enjoy each day with family and friends. Scripture tells us that life is like a vapor of smoke. It is here one moment and gone the next. Apostle Peter, through the guidance of Holy Spirit, gives us a roadmap on how to live a full life in Christ. Below is the breakdown.
1. Keep your tongue from saying evil: Psalms 34:13 says " Keep your tongue from saying evil things and your lips from speaking deceitful things." There is power in words. God spoke, using words, the universe into existence. The things we say , good or bad, has weight. A happy full life includes positive and constructive speech.  The bible is very clear about believers speaking only words which life up and build.  Proverbs 21:23 says " Whoever guards his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble."  I am not perfect with this truth yet. Sometimes my mouth can out run my legs. However, one thing I have tried to practice when I am upset or feeling offended is silence. I just don't talk. My wife hates this practice, but it ensures that I will not say words which I will regret later. We should all practice silence at times and not excuse our corrupt speech. Words are powerful especially words empowered by anger. Words are meant to be used to build foundations within relationships. They are meant to bring peace in the midst of a storm. They are meant to bring healing and comfort. They are also meant to be used to correct and direct. Live a full life by choosing the words you speak carefully. 
2. Turn away from Evil and do good: People who allow their lives to be consume with evil will die by that evil. People who are thieves, murderers, extortioners, and other evil consumptions typically die early in life. There is an old Latin saying." Vive gladio peri gladio.", which means " Live by the sword, die by the sword." This phrase actually is a biblical reference. Jesus spoke it to the disciples while He was being arrested in the Garden. Matthew 26: 52 " Then Jesus said to him, " Put your sword away! All who use a sword will be killed by a sword." Turning away from evil and doing good is a basic principle from Jesus' teachings. Regardless of how ruthless the world may be; we are called to do good. Doing good gives the wielder the power to live a full life. 
3. Seek Peace and run after it: In a world filled with arrogant and self-indulgent people, it is almost impossible to obtain peace. However, scripture is very clear. We are to seek peace and continue to pursue it regardless if the earthquake of evil is surrounding us. Hebrews 12:14 says," Try to live peacefully with everyone, and try to live holy lives, because if you don't you will not see the Lord."  There is a reason for the pursuit of peace. Peace from the believer stills the turbulent waters of life. Peace draws others from turmoil to the drinking hole of Christ. 
4.  Being mindful of the Lord's eyes: The Lord continually watches over us. His eyes never miss one second. One blink from the Lord captures a thousand years' worth of human existence. Many fight to seek approval from others but the only approval we need is from the Lord who is watching over us. He waits patiently to see our actions of righteousness. He waits to see if we will arise and do good on his behalf. The bible says in II Chronicles 16:9 " The Lord's eyes scan the whole world to find those whose hearts are committed to him and to strengthen them...." Living a long life means having God's approval. What does the Living God see in you each and every day? Is it something which would be pleasing or displeasing to His eyes? 
5. Being mindful of the Lord's ears: The Lord hears the prayers of the righteous and expels the prayers from the wicked. Living a full life comes from knowing our Lord through spiritual intimacy. Spiritual intimacy comes through prayer and speech to our Lord. His promise to us is that He will hear our prayers. Psalms 34: 15 says, " The Lord's eyes are on  righteous people. His ears hear their cry for help." There is nothing more refreshing than knowing there is someone who hears your cries. Most people in your life might never know about your personal struggles, but there is a Savior who desires to hear your prayers. 
6. Let the Lord confront your evil: Living a full life means allowing the Lord to confront the evil within. It means allowing the greatest housekeeper in the world to clean your house. The Lord confronts evil not to embarrass us but to save us. Evil or sin leads to death. It is the true cancer for mankind. The only cure comes from a caring and confronting Lord. Never be afraid to admit your sin or evil to the Lord. Confession can be transforming. Those who are humble will not have any problems when Holy Spirit confronts the sin within. Psalms 34:18 " The Lord is near to those whose hearts are humble. He saves those whose spirits are crushed." Allow the Lord to crush out those things in your life which are not part of His righteous living. 
Living a full life only comes through Christ. Believers should live long and productive lives. I know some believers have died early in life(Our understanding of life). Regardless of when we are commissioned to leave this world, we should live our lives with the fullness in Christ. 

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