Thank you so much choir. Here are the songs we sang and a couple with the congregation joining us. We added a sanctuary microphone a few months ago, not to project the live sound through the system but to allow me to record the audio–singing and spoken word. Works very well. I still need to do some tweaking, as I would like to have a little stronger signal, but really it is doing just what I had hoped for. Thanks to the guys on the board for going with this extra (not huge) expense.
I can also burn these songs to CD at your request.
James tells us this week in James 3. Will we be listening?
Similar to last week’s text, this is very plain and clear, and difficult to accept. But if we will surrender our ideas and thoughts, and make them all bow down and obey Christ, what a blessing on the path ahead, for us and for the people to whom God will express his greatness and love and mercy … through us.
James spares no words when he details the potential destructiveness of our tongue. And if that were not enough he tells us that is is humanly impossible for us to tame this destroying member of our body.
So what do we do? How do we do the impossible?
Good thing that God does the impossible. Good thing that we have very clearly written instruction concerning the way we are to speak to one another.
Well, it would be a good thing if we were listening. So are we? Has God taught us how to talk? How to react to disappointment and anger without hurting back? Never paying back insult for insult?
Or are we not convinced that controlling our tongue is out of the realm of possibility?
There is not explicit direction as to how to deal with our problem in this text. James just gives the dirty, rotten lowdown on the tongue.
But there is tremendous encouragement implicitly revealed in our text.
1) Facing the impossibility of the task we are forced to trust God. That’s a really good thing, right?
2) Fresh water. If we have the potential to sully the water, then maybe we have the potential to keep the water clean and pure. And that is the grace-filled, exciting opportunity we should be thrilled to fulfill. We can be vessels of God’s fresh water.
(John 7:37–38 NASB95) Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’ ”
Living water flowing out of you and me like a river! If this doesn’t “wow” you, then take a moment and check your pulse.
Quit polluting the water, peeing in the pool. Let God direct our ways and our words. Quit coming up with our own stuff, digging our own wells, finding our own refreshment.
(Jeremiah 2:13 ESV)For my people have committed two evils: they have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water.
Fresh water to a spiritually thirsty world! That’s what I’m talking about!
We have the opportunity to be fresh water.
No more human pollution.
Fresh water springs from the living water fountain of God.
No more rationalizations.
Listen to and obey God’s teaching as to how we speak to other people.
No more human principles overshadowing God’s truth.
Understand the potential for either destroying or building.