I heard my Dad ask this question in his message last Sunday – “What passage of Scripture motivated the way you interacted with people today?”
His question reminded me of one of the verses I’m praying for myself this year, Psalm 119:24. Your testimonies are my delight; they are my counselors. I’m asking God to make His Word my delight and my counselor.
What does that look like? How do we make the connection between what we read in the Bible and how we interact with people? Here are a few examples – I’ll give the behavior first and then the verses.
I’m ready to talk about God’s goodness and to share the gospel.
Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise. Psalm 51:15
But as for me, God’s presence is my good. I have made the Lord God my refuge, so I can tell about all you do. Psalm 73:28
Philip proceeded to tell him the good news about Jesus, beginning with that Scripture. Acts 8:35
Every day in the temple, and in various homes, they continued teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah. Acts 5:42
I have a filter for my tendency to be critical, impatient and unkind.
Refrain from anger and give up your rage; do not be agitated — it can only bring harm. Psalm 37:5-6
His buttery words are smooth, but war is in his heart. His words are softer than oil, but they are drawn swords. Psalm 55:21 (This description of someone who is not on God’s side serves as a warning to me: don’t be the person who appears one way but harbors hatred and bitterness in their heart.)
I’m motivated to behave more like Jesus and less like myself.
Now we who are strong have an obligation to bear the weaknesses of those without strength, and not to please ourselves. Each one of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. For even Christ did not please himself. On the contrary, as it is written, The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me. Romans 15:1-3
Love one another deeply as brothers and sisters. Take the lead in honoring one another. Romans 12:10
You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them…But it is not so among you. On the contrary, whoever wants to become great among you will be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you will be a slave to all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many. Mark 10:42-45
Do everything without grumbling and arguing. Philippians 2:14
I’m well aware that without the motivation of God’s Word and the help of the Holy Spirit, I’m a grouchy, negative, selfish and impatient person. It is only when I’m filled with His Word and walking in the power of the Holy Spirit that I can interact with people in a manner opposite of those characteristics.
That’s one of the reasons I begin my day in God’s Word. All of the verses I listed in today’s post are ones that I’ve highlighted from my daily Bible reading (from the Bible in a Year Plan I use and love). I can’t be motivated by something I’m not familiar with!
I hope you’ll consider this question again, and answer it in your heart (or in the comments below, if you care to share!):“What passage of Scripture motivated the way you interacted with people today?”