RESOLVING EVERYDAY CONFLICT

New Equipping Hour Class Starting January 7, 2018 This Sunday at Orlando Grace Church we begin this video curriculum study. Peacemaker Ministries describes it like this: We all have conflict. Think about the people you know. They may not be in the middle of a big blow up, but they certainly have tense conversations around the breakfast table or difficulties with an overbearing boss. Or more seriously, perhaps their marriage is on the verge of falling apart. Regardless, they are looking for answers. Resolving Everyday Conflict is an eight-lesson study that unpacks ...

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BLESSING & THE GOOD LIFE

How Peacemaking Commitments Make for the Good Life In The Grace of Giving,  Stephen Olford tells of a Baptist pastor during the American Revolution, Peter Miller, who lived in Ephrata, Pennsylvania, and enjoyed the friendship of George Washington. In Ephrata also lived Michael Wittman, an evil-minded sort who did all he could to oppose and humiliate the pastor. One day Michael Wittman was arrested for treason and sentenced to die. Peter Miller traveled seventy miles on foot to Philadelphia to plead for the life of the traitor. "No, Peter," General Washington ...

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REVENGE & THE GOOD LIFE

How Peacemaking Commitments Make for the Good Life Marcus Aurelius once said that the best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury. The apostle Peter recommended something similar in 1 Peter 3:8-12. 8 Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. 9 Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing. 10 For “Whoever desires to love life     and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil  ...

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GOOD DAYS, GRACE DAYS

How Peacemaking Commitments Make for the Good Life How do you define "the good life?" According to one source reported by Psychology Today, happiness consists of four things: experiencing pleasure, avoiding negative experience, seeking self-development, or making contributions to others. The apostle Peter wrote a different prescription for loving life and seeing good days in 1 Pet. 3:8-12. 8 Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. 9 Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the ...

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A STRATEGY FOR LOVING LIFE AND SEEING GOOD DAYS

How Peacemaking Commitments Make for the Good Life Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), the French philosopher warned: Let it not be imagined that the life of a good Christian must be a life of melancholy and gloominess; for he only resigns some pleasures to enjoy others infinitely better. The apostle Peter, writing to believers suffering severe persecution, would concur with that sentiment. Consider his words in 1 Pet. 3:8-12. 8 Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. 9 Do not repay evil for evil or ...

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LIVING IN PEACE & THE KISS OF LOVE

How Striving for Peace Fuels the Kiss of Love A church at odds will not likely have many of its folks practicing the gospel virtue of greeting one another with the kiss of love (1 Pet. 5:14). Perhaps that's why Paul finishes the way he does in the passage under consideration in this latest series of posts. After emphasizing the role of joy, wholeness, submission and agreement for enhancing the practice of greeting with a holy kiss in 2 Cor. 13:11-12, the apostle Paul ends with one final factor. "Live in peace." Rejoice, aim for restoration, listen to my appeal, ...

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LIKE-MINDEDNESS & THE KISS OF LOVE

How Agreeing on the Truth Fuels the Kiss of Love Our church learned the importance of the lesson of this post the hard way. Unity disintegrated big-time over major doctrinal differences. It was ugly, according to those who endured it. After emphasizing the role of joy, wholeness, and submission in enhancing the practice of greeting with a holy kiss in 2 Cor. 13:11-12, the apostle Paul turns to yet another significant factor. "Agree with one another." The text reads literally in the Greek this way: the same thing, think. I call it like-mindedness. Paul says ...

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SUBMISSION & THE KISS OF LOVE

How Following Leadership Fuels the Kiss of Love When you blog as a pastor you never know. Does anyone read what you write? I was both blessed and bothered recently by a report. Someone told me they were glad I have been writing lately on the New Testament exhortation to greet one another with a holy kiss (2 Cor. 13:12). Great. Score one for this pastor/blogger. Somebody actually reads these posts. My elation was soon tempered. "We think your church has become unloving." Ouch. So much for self-congratulation. Guess I need to keep hammering away at this ...

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THE GOAL OF THE KISS OF LOVE

How Aiming for Restoration Fuels the Kiss of Love Does your church have goals? The apostle Paul prescribed an important peacemaking one for the church at Corinth in 2 Cor. 13:11. Aim for restoration. Recently I've been writing about the kiss of love (1 Pet. 5:14) as a gospel grace for guarding unity in the church. In the first post I explained how the gospel shapes our community with oneness when we engage one another intentionally by greeting with the holy kiss of love. In the second post I emphasized how rejoicing in the Lord is the first of four things Paul ...

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JOY & THE KISS OF LOVE

How Rejoicing in God Fuels Greeting with Love I married a hugger. Jan loves to greet folks she knows with a warm embrace. She's just about the best example I know of someone who takes seriously the Bible's command to greet one another with a holy kiss (2 Cor. 13:12). She's turned me into more of a hugger! In my last post I wrote about the kiss of love (1 Pet. 5:14) as a gospel grace for guarding unity in the church. The gospel shapes our community with oneness when we engage one another intentionally by greeting with the holy kiss of love. The way I see ...

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