Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Timeless Teachings

Shift your thinking
As human beings we have a tendency to stick to events of the past and often our thinking and behavior is based on what happened to us at one time or on what someone said to us. Sometimes people still hold anger because someone was rude to them 20 years ago! In Respectfully Yours the changing of our thinking and behavior, by looking ahead instead of behind, is a main theme. In chapter two I wrote the following.
Jesus didn't get stuck in the past; He always looked to the future. When He was teaching the crowd about the Law in Matthew 5 and 6, He kept saying, "You have heard that it was said" and by doing that He urged the people to think about their behavior up until that moment. In other words: why do you do the things you do? He then continued "But now I tell you" and from that moment on He tells them to change their thinking and behavior. He didn't say the Law was no longer there, He gave them the way of fulfilling it. Jesus still wants to shift our thinking and behavior with His timeless teachings. He is still telling us "but now I tell you." He still urges us today to change from this moment on. We can make the decision today to live life from Jesus' point of view. Remember, love is the fulfillment of the Law. We need to love, because God loved us first! It is our Christian duty!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Love is the key

How do I want to be treated?
In my newest book Respectfully Yours a lot of questions are being asked to make the reader think. The key question is: how do I want to be treated?
God expects us to have a certain attitude towards our parents and others, not as a result of what they have done to us (good or bad) but as an example of Christ's love in us. Jesus teaches us to shift our thinking when it comes to treating others with respect or love. We shouldn't ask: what has he or she done for me. We have to ask ourselves another question, namely: how do I want to be treated? If we want to be loved, we have to love. If we want to be respected, we have to respect. If we want to be obeyed, we have to obey.

Our attitude towards others should no longer be the result of past experiences, but the key to unlock future blessings!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Doing Our Duty

Love is the fulfillment of the Law
Listen to what Jesus teaches us in Matthew 7:12

Do for others what you want them to do for you: this is the meaning of the Law of Moses and of the teachings of the prophets.
Treating others the way we want them to treat us is the meaning of the Law. Have you ever looked at it that way? To be honest, that one had me thinking for a while. Yet, it is so simple: I want to be loved, so I have to love others and in doing so I fulfill the Law. People have been discussing and debating the Law for ages and it all comes down to one simple question: how do I want to be treated? The answer to that determines my attitude toward others. The question therefore should no longer be: how am I going to respect the people who hurt me? How do I obey the ones that mistreat me? How can I do this? It is time to stop this struggle.
Our attitude should not depend on what other people did to us; it should be the result of what Jesus did for us! We are loved by Him and He expects us to do the same for others. It is time we stop thinking that we do God a favor when we are nice to someone-we are simply doing our duty!