Summary: Do you like working around others who are negative all the time? Let’s learn biblical reasons of how and why we should build others up!
One Saturday morning a mother awoke to the delightful smell of waffles and the sound of our two small boys in the kitchen with her husband. Padding down to breakfast, she sat on her husband’s lap and gave him a big hug for his thoughtfulness. Later that day, they were having a heated discussion in their bedroom when their four-year-old stopped them in mid sentence. Standing in the door he said, “Mommy, try to remember how you felt when you were sitting on Daddy’s lap.
Explain love- 1 Cor. 13:1-8a.
God is love, therefore we must ask ourselves, “What would love do?”
I. Godly relationships are active. (1-2)
A father and mother were teaching their little girl to pray before meals. Before every meal the girl would ask if she could pray, but she was still having a little trouble remembering the words. On one occasion she stepped in the middle of her prayer, looked up at her parents, who had their eyes closed, and demanded, “Mommy, wake up and tell me the words!” Tell your neighbor, “it’s time to wake up!”
A. Actions that lead to exhortation.
“restoration”- bringing people back to God in a gentle way. 1 Cor. 13:4a “patient and kind”
B. Actions that lead to edification.
Support, building up. 1 Cor. 13:7
God’s word tells us that we are judged by our actions. Everyone is watching! Therefore, He commands “ that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35“By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”(John 13:34-35)
II. Godly relationships are accountable. (3-6)
A dog food company’s newest product was not selling well. The president called in his management staff. “How’s our advertising team?” he asked. “Great,” replied the advertising executive. “This ad campaign will probably win industry’s top awards this year.” “All right,” the president continued. “How about the product design?” The production manager spoke up. “It’s great boss. Our new label and packaging scored high in every marketing test we ran.” “Hmmm. Well, how’s our sales staff? Are they doing their jobs?” The sales manager was quick to respond. “Oh sure. Our people are the best in the business.” There was a heavy silence as the president thought about what he’d just heard. “We’ve got great advertising, great packaging, a top-notch sales force, yet this product is coming in dead last in the dog food market. Does anyone have any idea what the problem might be?” Everyone looked at each other. Finally one brave soul spoke up. “It’s those stupid dogs, sir. They just won’t touch the stuff.”
Would you agree that God has a superior staff? Would agree that God has a superior product? Then can you imagine God in this meeting asking “What’s wrong?” And an Moses replying, “It’s the people. They just won’t touch the stuff.” How can we touch the stuff?
A. Accountability that keeps perspective. (3)
All to often we think we are something. But the bible very clearly says that we are nothing without Jesus. 12“And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.(Matthew 23:12) I spoke a little about this Wed. night. The ground is level at the cross. God has made it that way. Folks it is easier on you if you choose to be humble. God will bring the proud person down to His ground and He will raise the humble person up. Which would you rather experience, God lowering you, or lifting you up. BELL HIGH.
B. Accountability that is personal. (4)
Here is where all to often we fail. It takes time, and effort to examine ourselves. It often is a painful project. But in order for us to do God’s work, we must examine our lives! We must make preparations for what God is calling us to do. “Let us search out and examine our ways, And turn back to the LORD;” (LAM . 3:40)
C. Accountability that is public. (5)
If we are going to live a public Christian life, how many know that we really don’t have a choice? We are living a public life. Then we must keep things in perspective, and we must have the foundation of personal examination! For we shall bear our own load, and publicly I might add.
III. Godly relationships adjust. (7-10)
There was a little boy born with a sever handicap that would cause him to go into very violent seizures without any warning. The father would usually be the one holding their son during worship services, and on one particular occasion when the little child started into a seizure, the father got up and with a strong yet gentle love carried the boy to the back of the sanctuary where he held him close to his chest and rocked him, whispered to him, and did all he could to help his son through. One thing I noticed most of all was that there was no hint of embarrassment of frustration in the father’s face- only love for his hurting son. I felt God speak to my own heart and in so many words say, “That’s just the way I love you through your imperfections. I’m not embarrassed to have people know that you are m son.”