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Nehemiah 11-12:26

Jerusalem must have been a tough place to live in by the words of the first two verses of the 11th chapter,
1Now the leaders of the people were living in Jerusalem, the holy city, at this time. A tenth of the people from the other towns of Judah and Benjamin were chosen by sacred lots to live there, too, while the rest stayed where they were. 2And the people commended everyone who volunteered to resettle in Jerusalem.

Maybe today moving to Jerusalem from the country side may be like someone coming from a middle-class suburban background moving to the inner, inner city of Detroit.

I Corinthians 10:14-33

Mike’s comments on getting out of our comfort zones to win others to Christ has turned my focus and caused me to think about selfless acts of kindness. I intended to go somewhere else, but your words caused me to focus on an incident that was reported on the nightly news years ago, and act of forgiveness that changed an entire courtroom and a young man who did a very thoughtless and criminal act.

When a sin is committed against us, we are likely to cry for justice and revenge, but when that sin is a criminal act that causes us severer bodily harm, well---forgiveness is difficult. But forgiveness is an act of the “will” motivated by love. A women who had been severely injured in November 2004 when a turkey thrown out of a moving car smashed through her windshield, gave forgiveness to the perpetrator and hugged and comforted him after the sentencing. [Google the name Victoria Ruvolo and be blessed] Because of her petitioning the court for lenience, a twenty-five year possible sentence was reduced to 6 months in jail with 5 years probation. Now that is going beyond one’s comfort zone.

I wonder how many people touched by her act of kindness, were drawn to the One who gave her strength to do such a thing?


Psalm 34:11-22

How do we fear the Lord? That answer can be found in verses 13-14. The Amplified Bible reads this way:

Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit. Depart from evil and do good; seek, inquire for, and crave peace and pursue (go after) it! (Psalms 34:13-14 AMP)

Seems so simple doesn’t it? I think departing from evil and doing good is the easiest thing on the list. It is the tongue that is the most troublesome for us and without submitting that little organ to God, we face an uphill battle doing it on our own.

Even so the tongue is a little member, and it can boast of great things. See how much wood or how great a forest a tiny spark can set ablaze! And the tongue is a fire. [The tongue is a] world of wickedness set among our members, contaminating and depraving the whole body and setting on fire the wheel of birth (the cycle of man's nature), being itself ignited by hell (Gehenna). (James 3:5-6 AMP)

Problems with the tongue is why David wrote in another Psalm, “Set a guard, O Lord, before my mouth; keep watch at the door of my lips.” (Psalms 141:3 AMP)


Proverbs 21:14-16

My pastor has said that Common Sense == Anointed Wisdom. And I’ve always heard the comment about Common Sense, It’s not so common and I wonder why. Why do we choose to go after foolishness?

Grace and peace,
Ramona

Just a thought about the drawing of lots: the homes of people may have been some distance from Jerusalem and fields, animals, and crops may have needed tending. Going back and forth would probably be an inconvenience.

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