Silence, Stillness, and Centering before God (2 minutes)
You are full of grace and mercy. Every good gift comes from You. We are grateful for such compassion, yet our gratitude only goes so far. We take advantage of You and misuse Your gifts. We take good desires You give us and express them in sinful ways. We turn an attraction to beauty into a desire to control.
We look upon each other through the lens of lust and therefore see each other as objects rather than as people. Free us, O Lord, from the sin that binds us and from the self-centeredness that enslaves us. Transform our hearts so we may worship You with all our heart, mind, body, and strength, and thus see one another the way You see us: With such love that, while we were still sinners, Your Son died for us. In His Name we pray. Amen.
Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. Romans 15:2
The words we use are powerful. They can be the best encouragement or the strongest weapon. Ephesians 4:29 reminds us: ‘Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen’. So we need to be careful with our own words. And the first step to doing that is to make sure our hearts are completely aligned with God. In Matthew 12:34, Jesus said ‘the mouth speaks what the heart is full of’. If we’re speaking with hearts full of resentment or bitterness, our words will reflect this. But if our words come from a heart that’s filled with love, they’ll have the power to encourage and inspire people for good. Paul said ‘Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up’ (Romans 15:2).Even if our own situation isn’t perfect, it doesn’t stop us from encouraging others, and in that process, it can be a real encouragement to ourselves as well, to see how our words can make a difference to someone else.
Maybe we have to speak a word of correction to someone. We can still do that from a place of love, and in a way that doesn’t condemn and discourage the person. The Bible reminds us that ‘if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently’ (Galatians 6:1). Although we may need to remind the person of where they’re going wrong and turning away from God’s will, we should aim to do it from a place of encouragement and support, inspiring them to be the best they can be, with God’s help.
Heavenly Father, help me be a person that looks for and builds up the best in others and helps them grow in their relationship with You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen
Here is a simple easy to remember method for praying for those around you, even if you don’t know their specific needs. The five requests are based on the word “B-L-E-S-S”.
B – Body – For health, safety, and physical needs.
L – Labors – For the success and prospering of their work and/or studies (Jeremiah 29:7).
E – Emotions – For peace and joy to replace fear and anxiety (Matthew 10:13).
S – Social life – For family’s to function well together in their community.
S – Salvation – For each to understand salvation in Jesus Christ, and come to know Him personally and grow in their spiritual lives.
The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.
Conclude with 2 minutes of Silence