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Without Reproach

James Ch 1:2-6; My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach (ungrudgingly and without faultfinding), and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.

We live in a world that we’ve grown up in that has a fast food mentality. I’ve heard many people say this. We are impatient and behave erratically, sometimes irrationally when things don’t happen “quick, fast and in a hurry". We say things to each other that we normally wouldn’t say because of frustration. The word patience in the scripture above means to have endurance, a constancy, to continue on in waiting for an expected outcome.

In these many kinds of temptations or testing our character is being proven. Its kinda makes you feel like like a rat in an experiment that is being performed to see what our reaction will be when foreign matter is introduced into our little maze we’re supposed to run. But as the scripture says there is a perfect work in progress in each one of us. An ongoing ever strengthening cause, that as we endure and hold fast to our hope we come to know our Lord and Savior and are becoming more like him in “ALL” of our ways

In reading this scripture I saw something that could possibly be a key factor in why many of us hesitate to come before the Lord with our hearts open towards Him, willing for Him to see us in our vulnerabilities. No one likes to hurt, so walls are thrown up all around us so that we can appear as though we’re impervious to outside attacks. Growing up I was told that when someone said something hurtful to me, I was to say back to them, “Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” Someone forgot to inform my feelings on that matter, I found and am still finding that things said can hurt powerfully.

I’ve talked to people who made me feel stupid for what I was going through. They talked to me as though I were a baby and needed to grow up. Well maybe I did need to grow up, but their method of handling the situation didn’t help. The word reproach here in the Greek says to defame, that is, rail at, chide, taunt:—cast in teeth, (suffer) reproach, revile, upbraid. I can picture here an adult gritting their teeth, looking down at a child and saying to them, “Why don’t act like an adult!” How can we expect a child to act and think like an adult. Some of us are young in the Lord and we are “ALL” in the process of learning and growing, no matter how many years we’ve been a Christian. Some are more mature than others. Those who are mature ought to teach others, as they have been taught. 

Our Heavenly Father corrects us when we get out of line. But He doesn’t do it by making us feel stupid or worthless. If your feeling condemned let me assure you it is not the Lord that is making you feel that way. The Holy Spirit was sent to us to teach us and convict us in a way that brings us to repentance. We are brothers and sisters in the Lord, if we ask one another for advice or cry out for help, we want and expect loving help in return.

So if we want to help one another to grow in grace, we should do so without reproach. Do it in love and patience, not with impatience, waiting for that expected outcome. We should do for others, the way we would like for them to do for us.

Lord help us to hear what your Spirit is saying so that when we speak or act we can have confidence in what is said or done because we know that it comes from Your heart to ours. So that we may see growth in one another, because we have learned to nurture and admonish one another in love. Your love O Lord, that comes from above.

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