Be gentle (4)
When someone corrects us, we should try to be teachable and not unreachable. ‘Let everyone be quick to hear [be a careful, thoughtful listener], slow to speak [a speaker of carefully chosen words and], slow to anger [patient, reflective, forgiving]’ (James 1:19 AMP). If we can do the first two things, the third one naturally falls into place. If we're quick to listen and slow to answer back, we're going to be slow to lose our temper. ‘The one who accepts correction will be honoured.’ So let's use our ears more than our mouths, and be willing to accept correction. The wisest people have a ‘teach me’ attitude and are willing to learn from others. We can learn from anyone, if we just know the right questions to ask. It's important that we never stop asking questions, because the moment we refuse to learn, we can't grow any further. We might feel threatened by someone who has more experience than us and can teach us something. We might get defensive when someone makes a suggestion to us. We might resent someone for giving us advice, or refuse to listen to someone who's younger than us. It's often very humbling to admit our own mistakes or inexperience. We might feel that we're somehow lowering ourselves and losing respect if we have to learn something from another person. But knowledge is an amazing gift, and when someone offers to share their knowledge with us, let's jump at the chance. The Bible says, ‘Humbly accept the word planted in you’ (James 1:21 NIV). The word ‘humble’ here means ‘gentle’. When we approach God’s Word, we should try to approach it with a gentle, or humble, attitude that says, ‘Lord, I’m willing to be taught.’
Before you begin to read your Bible today, pray that God would open your heart and mind to whatever He wants to teach you, and take you on a fresh journey of discovery through His Word.
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