Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Word of the Day... April 1, 2015...


Act Medium
by Charles R. Swindoll
Laborers in the Vineyard
20 “For the kingdom of heaven is like [a]a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. 2 When he had agreed with the laborers for a [b]denarius for the day, he sent them into his vineyard. 3 And he went out about the [c]third hour and saw others standing idle in the market place; 4 and to those he said, ‘You also go into the vineyard, and whatever is right I will give you.’ And so they went. 5 Again he went out about the [d]sixth and the ninth hour, and did [e]the same thing. 6 And about the [f]eleventh hour he went out and found others standing around; and he *said to them, ‘Why have you been standing here idle all day long?’ 7 They *said to him, ‘Because no one hired us.’ He *said to them, ‘You go into the vineyard too.’
8 “When evening came, the [g]owner of the vineyard *said to his foreman, ‘Call the laborers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last group to the first.’ 9 When those hired about the eleventh hour came, each one received a [h]denarius. 10 When those hired first came, they thought that they would receive more; [i]but each of them also received a denarius. 11 When they received it, they grumbled at the landowner, 12 saying, ‘These last men have worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden and the scorching heat of the day.’ 13 But he answered and said to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for a denarius? 14 Take what is yours and go, but I wish to give to this last man the same as to you. 15 Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with what is my own? Or is your eye [j]envious because I am [k]generous?’ 16 So the last shall be first, and the first last.”
Death, Resurrection Foretold
17 As Jesus was about to go up to Jerusalem, He took the twelve disciples aside by themselves, and on the way He said to them, 18 “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem; and the Son of Man will be [l]delivered to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn Him to death, 19 and will hand Him over to the Gentiles to mock and scourge and crucify Him, and on the third day He will be raised up.”
Preferment Asked
20 Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to [m]Jesus with her sons, bowing down and making a request of Him. 21 And He said to her, “What do you wish?” She *said to Him, “Command that in Your kingdom these two sons of mine may sit one on Your right and one on Your left.” 22 But Jesus answered, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink?” They *said to Him, “We are able.” 23 He *said to them, “My cup you shall drink; but to sit on My right and on My left, this is not Mine to give, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared by My Father.”
24 And hearing this, the ten became indignant with the two brothers. 25 But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great men exercise authority over them. 26 It is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant, 27 and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; 28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His [n]life a ransom for many.”
Sight for the Blind
29 As they were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed Him. 30 And two blind men sitting by the road, hearing that Jesus was passing by, cried out, “Lord, have mercy on us, Son of David!” 31 The crowd sternly told them to be quiet, but they cried out all the more, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!” 32 And Jesus stopped and called them, and said, “What do you want Me to do for you?” 33 They *said to Him, “Lord, we want our eyes to be opened.” 34 Moved with compassion, Jesus touched their eyes; and immediately they regained their sight and followed Him.  Matthew 20

The children worked long and hard on their little cardboard shack. It was to be a special spot---a clubhouse, where they could meet together, play, and have fun. Since a clubhouse has to have rules, they came up with three:

Nobody act big.
Nobody act small.
Everybody act medium.

Not bad theology! In different words, God says the very same thing: "Let each of you regard one another as more important than himself" (Phil. 2:3). "Through love serve one another" (Gal. 5:13).

Just "act medium." Believable. Honest, human, thoughtful, and down to earth. Regardless of your elevated position or high pile of honors or row of degrees or endless list of achievements, just stay real.

What is it Solomon said? "Let another praise you . . . a stranger, and not your own lips" (Prov. 27:2).

Meaning what? Meaning no self-reference to some enviable accomplishment. Meaning refusal to scratch a back when yours itches. Meaning no desire to manipulate and manufacture praise. Meaning authentic surprise when applauded.

Like the inimitable Principal Cairns, headmaster of an English school, who was walking onto the platform along with other dignitaries. As he stepped up, a burst of spontaneous applause arose from the audience. In characteristic modesty, Cairns stepped back to let the man behind pass by . . . as he began to applaud his colleague. He genuinely assumed the applause was for another.

But one final warning: Don't try to fake it. False humility stinks worse than raw conceit.

The answer is not in trying to appear worthless or "wormy." The answer lies in consistently taking notice of others' achievements, recognizing others' skills and contributions . . . and saying so. That's called serving others in love. And that's what Christ did.

"Nobody act big. Nobody act small. Everybody act medium."

Such good advice from a clubhouse full of kids who, by the way, are pretty good at practicing what they preach.

Make yourself a little plaque with this rule on it 
and put it in a place where you will see it every day.  

I hope that you enjoyed this devotional as much as I did.  Have a Simply Heavenly day!!  God bless you!!!

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