Good morning. It is cold today. It feels like 22 degrees. Even though I was bundled up at the bus stop with fuzzy boots, ear muffs, a scarf and gloves, some of the boys still wore shorts. There is not a guide book on how to dress, but there are standards and ‘the norm’ for different areas. Here, the boys wear, what I call exercise clothes, loose fitting pants or shorts, shirts and sweatshirts. The girls wear leggings or jeans and t-shirts.
God clearly states his standards for us to live. There are no variations. God wants us to speak truthfully. God wants us to live our lives according to truth, justice and peace. God wants us to love our neighbor and not have an even a speck of distain in our hearts against our neighbors. God wants us to love truth and goodness, not false promises. God hates lies, evil and deception.
“These are the things you shall do:
Speak each man the truth to his neighbor;
Give judgment in your gates for truth, justice, and peace;
Let none of you think evil in your heart against your neighbor;
And do not love a false oath.
For all these are things that I hate,’
Says the Lord.”
–Zechariah 8:16-17 (NKJV)
These standards are hard. Yet, God wants us to treat others with love and respect, without a speck of evil in our hearts. Today, I will be challenged to be gracious and kind to everyone I encounter. I will aim for a pure heart and let go of all that is not pleasing to God.