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Summary: #9 in a series focused on the foundational biblical truths found in The Peace Prayer of St. Francis: Make Me an Instrument of Your Peace.

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Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.

Where there is hatred, let me sow love;

where there is injury, pardon;

where there is doubt, faith;

where there is despair, hope;

where there is darkness, light;

and where there is sadness, joy.

O, Divine Master,

grant that I may not so much seek

to be consoled as to console;

to be understood as to understand;

to be loved as to love;

for it is in giving that we receive;

it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;

and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

This week, we are going to look at: O, Divine Master,

grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;

First of all…CONSOLE …what does it mean?

"to alleviate or lessen a person’s grief, sorrow, or disappointment; to give solace or comfort"

It’s truly a GREAT GIFT of GOD to be able to CONSOLE people.

NOTICE…this prayer is not saying…LORD MAKE INTO A PERSON WHO NEVER HAS TO BE CONSOLED. But…it’s asking for BALANCE. It’s not always about ME…but Lord make me one who is not always looking to my own needs FIRST & FOREMOST. Make sense? You’re not called to be a martyr. So….for those of you who checked out….check back in!

SO…now that we know what CONSOLING is…WHAT DOES IT LOOK LIKE?

1. CONSOLING a person DOES NOT MEAN FIXING the person’s problem.

Christians many times make this mistake when they try to “help” people in grief or sorrow or disappointment.

Some people don’t enter into helping people, because you think you must be able to FIX the problem.

REPEAT AFTER ME: I WILL NOT TRY TO FIX YOUR PROBLEM.

2. CONSOLING is more about LISTENING than TALKING.

Just being there is HUGE. Allowing yourself to be a sounding board.

A big ear.

3. Consoling is simply pointing people toward HOPE.

Not….the sun will come out tomorrow.

Not…put on a happy face

Not…don’t worry, be happy

TURN YOUR EYES UPON JESUS. LOOK FULL IN HIS WONDERFUL FACE. AND THE THINGS OF EARTH WILL GROW STRANGELY DIM, IN THE LIGHT OF HIS GLORY & GRACE.

INSERT A PERSONAL STORY OR TESTIMONY HERE.

SO WHERE DOES JESUS WANT TO USE YOU as an instrument of consolation?

CONSOLING PEOPLE in their sorrow, grief, disappointments?

I remember God using me at OFFICE of ADMISSIONS at IOWA. My personal life was a mess. We were in a holding tank with God. DISAPPOINTMENT was all around me. I wasn’t anywhere I wanted to be.

Yet in the midst of my hopelessness & disappointment, God brought these people into my life. One lady said, Marty, God has you here to be our chaplain.

Isaiah 58:6 ...to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? 7) to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter— when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?

9)“If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, 10) and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. 11) The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden ,like a spring whose waters never fail. 12) Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundations; you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.

CLOSE WITH A LORD, USE ME PRAYER. AMEN.


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