We All Need One Another (part 2)

There's a phrase in the Bible that speaks of the "roots of bitterness" (Hebrews), and that is exactly right because bitterness is a root that can spread through your life like the roots of a tree. Furthermore, do you know this secret?

The reason we spend so much time complaining is because we're not really sure we can fix our problems! It is much, much easier to complain about our hurts and obstacles than it is to work and overcome them.

Of course, there is another reason why the world needs you to be a party enhancer. Every one you meet has more self-doubt than you can imagine. They need you to encourage them every day. They need your compliments, affirmations, and applause. It will help them have the confidence to believe they can fix their lives and not just whine about them.

Okay, so far I've set the tone by inviting you to open your bedroom window to hear the joy of the world. Now let's add to the tone by noticing what else you will hear from your bedroom window. Listen hear and afar and you will hear:

  • The agony of someone's loneliness
  • The smashing of dreams
  • The crying of a broken heart
  • The haunting fear of death

Don't you know this to be true? Isn't the person right who said, "Everyone you meet is carrying far more burdens than you could ever imagine"?

This is the central cry of the Bible—people need your help! We all need one another. With that tone in mind, I invite you to hear 7 further reflections on a fantastic Bible verse that could change your life. Look at this fantastic verse again:

SEE THE WELFARE OF THE PLACE IN WHICH YOU LIVE, AND PRAY TO THE LORD ON ITS BEHALF, FOR IN ITS WELFARE YOU WILL FIND YOUR WELFARE.

Just one more thing before I get to my 7 reflections: Notice how applicable that verse is to every person in the world. It is one of the many universal "this would play anywhere" Bible verses. It is one of my private agonies that so many people do not know the

  • Timeless
  • Relevant
  • Totally useful
  • Easy to understand

Bible passages.

Instead, people think the Bible is about obscure, theoretical mumbo jumbo that has nothing to do with ordinary life. How sad! How sad! But enough about that. We've got a beautiful gem in front of us and I invite you to notice:

  1. EVERYONE IS INVITED to seek the welfare of the world! There's no age restriction—you can even help out if you are a teenager. There are no academic qualifications. You do not need a PhD. to help the world in its pain. You don't need to be a minister. You don't need to be anything other than a person who seeks the welfare of the world.
  2. You are invited to seek the welfare of the place where you are! This passage has a local emphasis. So often, life seems like it is elsewhere and tomorrow. Not so when it comes to help! The people in your place—right now—need you to lend a hand.

    I have an Uncle Bill who lives in the Maritime Provinces in Canada. As a young boy, I remember him saying, "Lord, help us to be faithful to You in our corner of the vineyard." We are most responsible for our corner of the vineyard. Uncle Bill got it right, and so we must be wise and motivated to do our part for our families, churches, businesses, friends, and locales!
  3. This verse is a CALL TO ACTION. We are to "seek" the welfare of the place where we live. You are invited to go to town in helping your town. We are called to be go-getters, doers, and people of action. Jesus said, "The harvest is plentiful, the laborers are few," and the Lord calls for you to labor in His harvest, which is the whole world.

    Of course, we must think, plan, and dream about the actions we are going to take. Proper actions in helping the world require looking after ourselves so that we are not a burden on the world. Proper action involves using your talents—the world needs your plumbing skills as much as it needs the wisdom of a writer. Proper action means first looking after our own families. All that requires thought and wisdom, but this must be wisdom that leads to action.
  4. We are also called to pray for our local world. "Pray to the Lord on its behalf," writes Jeremiah. Although I do not know everything about how prayer works, here is one amazing thing I know about you and me. Are you ready to hear it? You probably think I'm going to say that you do not pray enough or that you have given up on prayer. No, I'm not going to say that. Instead, I'm going to say something far more amazing…

    Here is what is amazing about all of us: We all have 22 things we obviously should stop doing long before we ever should consider not praying for something. Let me give you an example: Imagine you are in the hospital. You might wonder whether we should pray for you or you should pray for yourself. After all, we pray for people and (let's face it) they die. So…why pray?

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