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Summary: People of God make up a family, and families sometimes ’feud’. Jesus lays out some helpful rules for restoration - 1. Personal Effort 2. Plural Effort 3. Public Effort - Link inc. to formatted text, audio, and PowerPoint.

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Get Along Children

Matthew 18:15-35

http://gbcdecatur.org/sermons/GetAlong.html

The beginning of this chapter tells us how to enter the family of God...by humbling ourselves as little children before the Lord. The rest of the chapter tells us how to get along with all the other children in our new family, and again there is a great need for humility.

It only takes two to have a family feud, but the more children there are, the more likely that you will be rubbed the wrong way. Well, the family of God is a big one, so no wonder there’s a big need for this passage.

John 13:35

By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

It’s shameful and disgraceful when children of God, washed in the blood, forgiven of a multitude of sins can’t find it in themselves to work out minor grievances with one another.

1. Confronting another

• Make a personal effort

v. 15 There has to be a personal effort made. The key word is ‘alone.’ The Lord didn’t say to write them a letter or place a phone call, but go personally, let them hear the tone of your voice and see the look in your eye. And go to THEM only. Some people will go alone all right, but to just about anyone else OTHER than that person. This is sin!

Go with the attitude of winning a friend, not winning an argument. Did you know you can win an argument but still be the big loser?! How many guys here have ever won an argument w/ your wife and when you did, you wished you hadn’t?

If you are witnessing to someone and you allow it to degrade into an argument, it’s a lost cause. You always need to be building bridges, not blasting bunkers.

The word ‘gained’ in v. 15 is the idea of recovering something that you had lost...like a purse, wallet, or valuable. And every member of this church should be a valuable part of your life, not cast aside with respect of persons. We belong to one another, and it should hurt when we lose a brother or sister.

“They just try my patience”. Maybe God is using them in your life to develop patience!

Ill.—like the oyster, when some grainy character gets under your skin, make a pearl out of the situation.

There once was an oyster

Whose story I tell,

Who found that some sand

Had got into his shell.

It was only a grain,

but it gave him great pain.

For oysters have feelings

Although they’re so plain.

Now, did he berate

the harsh workings of fate

That had brought him

To such a deplorable state?

Did he curse at the government,

Cry for election,

And claim that the sea should

Have given him protection?

’No,’ he said

As he lay on a shell,

Since I cannot remove it,

I shall try to improve it.

Now the years have rolled ‘round,

As the years always do,

And he came to his ultimate

Destiny stew.

And the small grain of sand

That had bothered him so

Was a beautiful pearl

All richly aglow.

Now the tale has a moral,

for isn’t it grand

What an oyster can do

With a morsel of sand?

What couldn’t we do

If we’d only begin

With some of the things

That get under our skin.

Author unknown

Every part of the body is important and needed, so never allow yourself to develop the attitude of ‘who needs them anyway’...you need them, that’s who!


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