“That’s Not How We Do It!”

I’m reading through Jeremiah 34 and piously thought, “I’m so glad I don’t have slaves.”

God laughed!

How do I enslave people? With my expectations.

  1. I expect new believers to act like mature Christians. I expect perfection from mature Christians. All. The. Time.
  2. A year ago, our church hired a music director. It excited me because he can play all the instruments in the band – especially the keyboard! God showed me that I keep enslaving him every time I use the phrase…

“That’s not how we do it.”

Jeremiah 34:16, “But then you turned around and profaned My name when every one of you took back his male and female slaves, whom you had set free, at their pleasure, and you brought them into subjection to be your slaves.” Modern English Version

When I enslave someone to my expectations I am profaning God’s Name.

* * * * * * *

I’ve been thinking lately of Peter, James, and John. They were the disciples closest to Jesus. They saw him transfigured and talking with Moses and Elijah, (see Matthew 17:1-9).

I wonder how they felt about Paul, who was formerly Saul the persecutor of Christians. He was present at the death of Stephen, the first martyr. At first, the disciples feared him and didn’t believe he was a disciple, (see Acts 9:26).

Later Paul rebuked Peter, (see Galatians 2:11-14). Peter, who…

  • …preached on the Day of Pentecost and saw 3000 saved?
  • …walked on water?
  • …was one of the inner circle who traveled with Jesus for 3 years?

How did Peter respond? He called Paul “beloved brother who writes with wisdom things that are hard to understand,” (see 2 Peter 3:14-16).

I have to let go of my expectations and live out the verse I pray over my children every day.

Romans 12:10, “Be devoted to one another with brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” New International Version

* * * * * * *

“…Love within the family of God. Honor one another above yourselves. Only a mind renewed by the Holy Spirit (see v. 2) could possibly do this, (see Philippians 2:3).” New International Version Study Bible Notes

* * * * * * *

Philippians 2:3, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.” New International Version

* * * * * * *

Selfish ambition or vain conceit. The mortal enemies of unity and harmony in the church….This is the mindset of those who are not conceited but who have a right attitude toward themselves and others….Not that everyone else is superior or more talented, but that Christian love sees others as worthy of preferential treatment….” New International Version Study Bible Notes

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