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How to heal their hurts and dry their tears

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Today’s bible study is from the Gospel of Matthew: 7:21: Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”

In this relatively short verse, Matthew teaches us a profound lesson. It is one we have undoubtedly heard many times before, and one which we need to hear yet again. Matthew tells us that it is not enough to simply say, ‘Lord, Lord,’ but we have to do more. We have to actually try to do the will of God, our Father in heaven if we hope to enter the kingdom of heaven.

Does this remind you of someone who does something hurtful, thoughtless or cruel and then simply says, ‘I’m sorry?’ How easy it is to forget to do something we should have done or to do something which we should not have done and, whether inadvertently or on purpose, hurt someone in the process. By saying three short syllables, can it possibly make everything right once again? Will hurts be healed, words forgotten, and wrongs righted? The simple answer is NO.

We need to do something more. We need to think about what we said ‘I’m sorry’ for, think about how it hurt someone, and think about how we can make changes to that it will not happen again. Too often we are hurtful without meaning to be. We simply act without thinking, speak without considering the consequences and lazily leave work undone. We are not bad people. We are simply faulty, frail, fallible children of God. We try to be loving Christians, but we simply can’t do everything right all of the time.

Dr. Phil recently repeated something he often says on television. He said, “Every morning I ask myself: What can I do to make my wife’s life better today?” What a wonderful way to begin each new day! Not by wondering how to make your own life a bit better, but by thinking about how you can make a loved one’s life better. Well, as simple as it may sound, we can all do this with Jesus. We can take a moment at the beginning of each new day to think about how we can more effectively do the will of our Father in heaven. We can ask: What can I do to make God pleased with me today?

Maybe it is simply talking to a neighbor, phoning a loved one far away, or fixing supper for a spouse or partner. Maybe it is meditating and rejuvenating the spiritual within you. Maybe it is in giving a bit of your time, talent or material gifts to those in need. Maybe it is just asking that God come, once again, into your heart and fill you with the joy of the Holy Spirit. Whatever it is, it will be one small step toward doing the will or our Father in heaven.

References: The People’s New Testament Commentary by M. Eugene Boring and Fred B. Craddock and The MacArthur Bible Commentary by John MacArthur.

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