Loyalty and Kindness

Never let loyalty and kindness leave you!
    Tie them around your neck as a reminder.
    Write them deep within your heart.
Then you will find favor with both God and people,
    and you will earn a good reputation.
Proverbs 3:3-4 NLT

I’ve been reading in Proverbs the last couple weeks. I had gone through other New Testament books and was trying to find my next read when God put wisdom on my heart. The bible is the best place to look for wisdom – it has guidance for every situation we face in life. And Proverbs is literally a book of wisdom that was written in part by the wisest man to ever live, King Solomon.

When I read over Proverbs 3:3-4, I felt a stirring in my heart. I had struck fire. King Solomon felt that loyalty and kindness were so important that you should tie them around your neck as a reminder, and write them deep within your heart. These two simple nouns are keys to finding favor with both God and people. I feel like these are two words I need to both study and put into practice.

Kindness is straightforward enough in what it means, but not as easy to practice. Never let kindness leave you. That means in whatever situation I find myself in, with whomever I may be talking to or working with, I need to let kindness be my mode of operation. I need to be friendly, generous, and considerate with everyone.

Loyalty goes a little deeper. I’m not a scholar, so I don’t know if my interpretation is completely correct, but when I think of loyalty I think of my “people”. My husband, family, friends. When it comes to them, I need to be loyal. I need to have their backs, not speaking bad about them to anyone. I need to fight through the hurt to keep the relationship. I need to give them my undying support and love. I need to defend them and be their advocate. I need to stick by their side, just as Sam stuck by Frodo in The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

I can see why these two words are so incredibly powerful. Think about how relationships, how your work and home environment, might change when these are put into action.

I hope this inspires thought and action like it did for me. And I hope you’ll join me in praying that God will develop these things within us.

 

8/7/18 | Daily Bread

“Give us this day our daily bread.”
Matthew 6:11 NLT

It was our first few months in Colorado, and although it was difficult for me, it was a world of pain for my husband, Luke. He had a boss that tore him to pieces daily.

It was so hard to watch. So hard to control my anger.

On top of it, we had two vehicles with phantom issues. We had no one to help us and no money for a mechanic, so it was on Luke’s shoulders to fix them.

I had my own stresses to contend with as well. We went through so much change in such a short amount of time.

This was the first time in my life I started getting up with the sun to desperately seek God. We had a spare bedroom in our apartment, and it became a safe place for me. One of the first verses that jumped out to me during that time was give us this day our daily bread. I badly needed Jesus to know what was going on and that I was relying on him. It was he alone that could give me enough to get me through each day.

What that new routine did was something really cool – it opened my eyes to see how he was working. As he worked and provided all that I needed each day, I increasingly gained confidence in him and his ability to provide. I began to trust him.

Just think about this: This is one of the lines that Jesus himself instructs us to pray – give us this day our daily bread. Think on that this week, and take it into consideration in all that comes up.