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Mike you statement and questions, “Today in Proverbs chapter 16 verse 24 we read – “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” How does this verse speak to you? Do you believe that words have power? Do you speak to others with pleasant words? Do you realize that your words literally can be sweet to the soul of others and healing to their bones? “ had me to remember something I read yesterday on MSN’s WEB site: here is the link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13086425/ It is about an Arkansas model (A state in the United States) on dealing with overweight children. Letters were sent home and it was noted on the child’s report card stating that the child was “fat,” really over weight, and that got many parents vocally angry; however, they, the parents began to act, began doing something about it. The words the parents didn’t want to hear, or in this case read, is bringing healing to the child’s bones and the parents as well.

Something we think that nice, kind words are those that don’t get us upset; however, the words which were hard on the ears and ego’s of the parents were sweet to their souls. I have this philosophy: Don’t tell me how nice I’m walking if I’m taking a short walk on a long pier into shark infested waters. Yell, no matter how angry you think it might make me. Being nice may not always mean or translate into kindness.

Grace and peace,
Ramona

Boldness is good when it's backed up by a life that is truly integrated--has integrity and is congruent. Unfortunately most of the boldness is obnoxious, rude, and at times arrogant and mean spirited. I don't sense this with the apostles. I sense they couldn't help themselves but speak boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus because they had lived so closely to Him. (Acts 4:13)

However, I do find it interesting that when the apostles, including Peter and Paul turnn their pen to 'exhorting believers to witness', that there are very few statements that urge an overt boldness. Instead what we hear from Peter in 1 Peter 3:15 is But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give the reason for the hope you that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience. "

Elsewhere Paul says, in Colossians 4:4-6 to Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. But then he tells the rank and file followers of Jesus to 'be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity, Let your conversation be ALWAYS FULL OF GRACE, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone." And later in 1 Thessalonians 4:11 he says, "Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, SO THAT YOUR DAILY LIFE MAY WIN THE RESPECT OF OUTSIDERS....."

I have found it helpful to distinquish between apostolic evangelistic efforts and the local expression through a community of believers. When it comes to breaking new ground the apostles were aggressive and frontal in their approach, much like taking a beachhead during the war. To get a foothold into a city or country SOMEONE needs to move out boldly, but once the beachhead is established, it seems the apostles, especially Paul had a different approach for local believers. Here's a challenge a missionary from Brazil once gave me: REad ALL the new testament epistles and try to find verses that promote an aggressive, bold, confrontative approach. Don't include verses that have apostles exhorting apostles to 'do the work of the evangelist.' Just look for teaching that actually tells believers to 'preach the gospel'....

If one is honest and careful one will see that there are two valid approaches that emerge---there is the need for ongoing proclamation, and there is also a need for what Jim Peterson, author of Living Proof, calls 'affirmation evangelism, where the lifestyle of the believer in a town or city, is critical to the progress of the gospel.

i'm sure I may have raised some controversy but that's okay. I think today with the Da Vinci code stuff swirling all around us, Jesus followers would do well to prepare themselves with 'gentleness and respect' to live out the gospel and to share when appropriate with integrity, and without manipulation or distortion.

I Kings 1 (NKJV)
28
Then King David answered and said, “Call Bathsheba to me.” So she came into the king’s presence and stood before the king.
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And the king took an oath and said, “As the LORD lives, who has redeemed my life from every distress,
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just as I swore to you by the LORD God of Israel, saying, ‘Assuredly Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he shall sit on my throne in my place,’ so I certainly will do this day.”
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Then Bathsheba bowed with her face to the earth, and paid homage to the king, and said, “Let my lord King David live forever!”

~~
NOTE: Solomon becoming king is a fascinating study of God’s righteousness—the true “just-ness” and the true mercy of God’s righteousness.

David committed sin and adultery with Bathsheba. Later, he repented of these sins when confronted by Nathan the prophet. Then, when Bathsheba had a child, David fasted and prayed with great fervency that the baby be saved. Yet, because sins have consequences, the baby died. God is just.

Yet, when Solomon was born, God was very pleased with David and with the new son, Solomon.

The reality is that when we sin, there are always consequences. However, if there is repentance, God’s grace is always greater than the sin.

Romans 5 (NKJV)
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Moreover the law entered that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more,
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so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Vance

12Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved."
............................
8 Our help is in the name of the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth
............................
I have to say those two verses stood out today when I read them.I keep praying I learn to depend on God more and not on my own wisdom...or the things I see.
On boldness in faith,I have to say sometimes our lives and actions(Spirit led ones)speak alot louder than when we try to aggresively kick a person into God's kingdom.
God bless you all

I pray everyday for a boldness in faith, because we all know that true faith always results in deeds. True faith involves a commitment of your whole self to God. According to James 2:26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead. Knowing this thought which our faith has helped to uncover should allow us to proceed with boldness. I believe that if we ask God for boldness, that we can become productive and more fruitfull.

I really appreciate something Vance said in his comment today,"The reality is that when we sin, there are always consequences. However, if there is repentance, God’s grace is always greater than the sin" Hearing this today has given me some renewed confidence. According to Romans 5:1-2 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. I needed to read these words today.
Amen

Though Peter had countless faith experiences of the visible kind-(he knew Christ incarnate and resurrected), he did not become a fearless apostle until he had an invisible faith experience- (Pentecost). May that same invisible Holy Spirit that inspired Peter animate believers in our day.

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