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“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.”   

— Ephesians 4:31

This Week's Thought

We are nearing the end of our summer “Baggage” series, and this verse effectively sums up the focus of the entire series: “let go of the old self and all that hinders, take hold of the new self and all that helps.” In Sunday’s message I shared why we tend to respond like we do… with bitterness, rage and anger, slander and malice, and it is usually because we are either holding on to rights or holding on to hurts. Rights and hurts are powerful forces that if left unchecked will ultimately not only affect the health of our relationships but could end them all together.

In our former church I had a funeral for a woman who had been a long-time church member. When visiting her she talked often of her two grown daughters that lived only a few hours away, but sadly they very rarely if ever visited their widowed mother. I sensed there had been some disagreement or contention in their relationships years ago, that evidently never really got resolved. All of them were holding on to their right to keep each other at arm’s length because of these unresolved issues. When the mother suddenly passed away I found myself planning her service with two daughters I was meeting for the first time… the first time in nearly eight years as her mother’s pastor. They didn’t have to speak of the regret, because it was obvious on their faces and in their tears.

If anyone had a right to end a relationship it was God with mankind, but He didn’t. He was not motivated by rights, but rather by a restorative love. I encourage you this week with the thought that God’s love is not only abundant enough to restore His relationship with you, but to restore your relationship with others. Trust Him with those rights and hurts… He knows exactly what to do with them to bring about restoration and healing.

– Pastor Chad

All Devos

Week 9

“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” -- Ephesians 4:32

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Week 8

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.”    -- Ephesians 4:31

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Week 7

“...and do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” --…

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Week 6

“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up…

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Week 5

“He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that…

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Week 4

“…and do not give the devil a foothold.” -- Ephesians 4:27

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Week 3

“In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry…” -- Ephesians…

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Week 2

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift…

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Week 1

“…Since we are surrounded by such a great crowd of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders, and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us…”
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