Counsel – n- advice; opinion or instruction given in directing the judgment or conduct of another; Theology-one of the advisory declarations of Christ, considered by some Christians as not universally binding but as given for aid in attaining moral perfection.
Shelia’s Definition- Correct decisions; You KNOW what you should do.
Personal Moment– Last week while beginning this writing, it dawned on me that I have a habit that I have inherited from my mom. It was brought to my attention by my son and other people I know a few months ago. When giving advice, I always say “you need to do…” When talking to my mom she is ALWAYS saying “you need to” or “they need to.” I don’t recall hearing her say the words “you should.” Last Sunday after church services, a person that used to keep me as a child, told my son that his 3-year-old daughter was “bossy like her grandma.” She went on to say “Shelia came out of the womb giving instructions.” Convicted, I felt. I found it odd that I was reminded of this habit while writing about COUNSEL.(TYHS) I suppose it’s a gift from birth that I have yet to master to God’s liking. Yes, I should work on being more like Jesus when “giving instructions” and making correct decisions, aka counsel.
Ok, so we’ve arrived at our third gift from the Spirit of the Lord. Yeah! This is all a part of God’s grace leading us home. Amen. It appears to me that once we receive wisdom, then comes understanding leading us open to receive and use the gift of counsel in its correct form. Once the heart and mind is right with God, we are in a better place to receive and give counsel from the Lord. We will be operating through God’s perspective, not our own. It’s all about the Lord stepping into us and us stepping into others. “Can you hear me now?”
This gift from the Spirit of the Lord allows us to do at a minimum at least two (2) things before becoming the maximum in Christ: use both wisdom and understanding before giving counsel. People with the gift of counsel are well-appointed to say and do what should be changed from bad to good. For example- In the church, a few people have observed that there exist many dysfunctional and divisional ministries. Such ministries do not glorify our Lord. People that have received the gift of counsel have the ability and know-how to both offer a solution for and resolve problems.
Listen. Improper counsel opens the door for division in the body of Christ. When that door is open and godliness is shut out, anyone can come in and try to seduce members into their way of thinking how things should be running.(TYHS) Remember the letters to the seven churches? The Church in Philadelphia only appears to have operated using proper counsel received from God. Rev. 3:7-13 NIV ; Rev. 3:7-13 KJV
God tells us that this church was weak and we also learn that NO church is perfect. But, God said that he will keep such a church from the hour of trial/temptation. In my heart I believe this to be so because the church used the Lord’s gift of counsel to their best ability. Did you notice that even through their weakness, this church did two things: (1) kept His commands and (2)endured patiently…not just endured?
The greatest form of counsel we have received from our God is in the form of Jesus’ parables.(MHO) Let me share two parables and brief thoughts on His instructions.
Matthew 9:16 No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up taketh from the garment, and the rent is made worse.
Self- Check Moment 1- This is a habit infused in humans since the day of Adam and Eve’s disobedience. We try to patch up sin and things get worse. None of us like to give up things, nor beings that we become attach to; nor the ways we become attached to doing things when outside the will of God. We are hardcore rebels when it comes to a good change. Did you know that rebelliousness rejects counsel and limits wisdom and understanding? When we rebel against correct counsel, it is clear to God and others that we lack wisdom and understanding. We are quick to give up on God’s counsel when things are not going the way we want them to go and when other options are presented to us that are not in line with God’s counsel. Jesus clearly counsels us on what happens when you mix the old with the new. When we are new in Christ, old ways should disappear. Change…He never said it would be easy.
Luke 6:46-49 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.
Self- Check Moment 2-This parable counsels us by letting us know that we should not have the mind-set of “do as I say, not as I do.” As followers of Christ, we should both say and do what he counsels us to do to receive the gift of counsel which gives us the ability to counsel others. James gave us great counsel to back up Jesus’ teaching: “Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:”(James 1:21-23)
Word to the Children of God- The Gift of Counsel infuses us with the ability to look directly at our “natural face in a glass:” Let us stop being deceived and stop deceiving others by pretending that we have received the true Gift of Counsel from the Spirit of the Lord.
Can you find anywhere in God’s word that Jesus only spoke and did not do? This counselor in training closes her case. 😛
Thank you for stopping by and spending time with me.
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Love Covers A Multitude of Sins
May we all be submissive to the counsel that is found in the Word of God… How often our flesh would have us to ignore the scriptures and do as our sinful natures would have us to do. Thanks for this posting Sheila… it was a blessing!
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