Posted by: trbccoffeebreak | July 24, 2015

Inspiring Sisters

cb devo july 24“When his (Joseph’s) brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.” Genesis 37:4 (NIV)

A simple compliment. A string of praise. All innocent accolades of appreciation. But what happens when we make one person the target of our praise? How do others feel when we overlook their contributions or ignore their positive qualities?

A trip back to Egypt would quickly reveal the twist and turns within a family overshadowed by favoritism. Jacob loved his son, Joseph, more than any of his other eleven children. Unfortunately, the reality of this father’s affection was totally visible to his entire family. Unkind words, hatred and jealousy spiraled out of control as these brothers saw the special way their father treated Joseph. And if you read the rest of the story, you will find Joseph deep in a pit at the mercy of his siblings. Sold into slavery and separated from his family for years, I’m sure Joseph would have traded all those favors for a lifetime with those he loved.

So what’s our take away? Words of praise and compliments encourage us. Affirmation stirs us to exercise those gifts God has given us. As spiritually mature Christians, we should find great joy in other’s success and express our appreciation freely. But when we get unbalanced in giving praise and choose to show favor to one while excluding others, we fail to foster a climate of growth, unity and love that God desires. As a wise farmer fertilizes his entire crop so it will yield a fruitful harvest, we too should spread our praise so no one is tempted to be stunted by roots of bitterness or jealousy.

“Father, our words and actions have the power to inspire, encourage and uplift others. May we intentionally touch the hearts of everyone you bring into our path.”

For His Glory
Janet Martin
TRBC Coffee Break

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