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Take 5!: 5 Minutes to a Better Life

Take 5! New jpeg

 Take 5!

5 Verses, 5 Questions, 5 Minutes

Before we start our study time today, please take a minute and go before our Lord in prayer.

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Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous; not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing. 10 For
“He who would love life
And see good days,
Let him refrain his tongue from evil,
And his lips from speaking deceit.
11 Let him turn away from evil and do good;
Let him seek peace and pursue it.
12 For the eyes of the LORD are on the righteous,
And His ears are open to their prayers;
But the face of the LORD is against those who do evil.”
1 Peter 3:8-12

In verses 8-9, we are given several commands. Which is the hardest for you?

I must confess, at times I have trouble with all of them. My biggest challenge, however, is in verse 9 not returning reviling for reviling (insult for insult). Instead of repaying insult with insult, we are to repay insult with blessing. I imagine this practice would bring a quick end to most arguments. Though I have been a Christian for many years, I have never employed this technique, nor have I ever heard anyone else. Dare we give it a try? Consider the following conversation:
“You are a stubborn, opinionated woman!”
“Oh, yeah? Well, you are a hard-working, caring man and I appreciate you.”
Blessing for insult.

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What happens as a result of returning blessing for insult (vs. 9)?

God’s word says we will receive a blessing. We will also spare ourselves the angst of a long drawn out argument.
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Besides speaking blessings to those who insult us, how else might we bless them?

We could do something kind or pray for those who hate us.  (Confession #2: I have often heard people say, it’s hard to hate someone you’re praying for. I struggle with this. Sigh.)
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If we want to have a better life (who doesn’t?) and see good days, what must we do (10-12)?

Do you need a little help with this blessing for insult thing? God sees you and hears you (vs. 12) so we can cry out to Him in prayer. Ask Him to help you be of one mind, to love others, and to humble yourself and bless others when they insult you.
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Is blessing for insult just a suggestion? What does verse 9 say?

I never saw this part of the verse before — it is our CALLING. It is part of who we are and what we do in Christ Jesus. This one is going to be hard, so let me pray for you.
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Dear Father,
Thank You that because You bless us, You call us to bless others. Help us to stop basing our treatment of others on how they treat us but on how You treat us. We can bless others because we have already been blessed by You. Help us to stop and think before we speak. There is no room for insults in the mouth of a Christ follower. May the words we speak be the words You would speak.
In Jesus Name,
Amen
Go out and find someone to bless and you will have a better life.
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