Let Your Countenance Increase Your Influence

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

If today’s Minneapolis weather, where I live, was a person, it would be a gloomy person. It’s not the kind of day where you’d look out the window and think, Wow, it’s so beautiful outside. I can’t wait to get out there. No, it’s grey with leaves almost all fallen and winter soon coming. Nothing is sprouting, the trees are almost bare, and things look dirty from the accumulation of dust and dirt without rain to wash it away. And hardly a bird or critter in sight.

If today’s weather were a person, it would be kind of a cold person. It’s not only grey outside, but the temperature is just about freezing. It won’t get much warmer than that all this week and most likely, a little colder. That’s exciting—NOT! 

I don’t love gloomy or cold days. And to be truly honest, I don’t love to be around gloomy and cold people all that much either. It’s easy to find people who seem gloomy and cold. I walk by them all the time. They remind me of when I look out the window and see on a day like today. Gloomy and cold.

Of course I am hoping they aren’t. Maybe they just need a smile. I walk around with one as much as possible. I do because people need smiles. If I get their eye contact, I’ll say “Hi.” Maybe they need a “Hi.” I think life is better with a smile and a “Hi.” Don’t you? Some people don’t seem to agree with me. They look at me confused that I smiled and said “Hi” to them. Maybe something is really bothering them. Maybe something bad has happened or is going on in their life. But don’t they need that smile and “Hi” even more then?

When you go out into your day today, will you look like a beautiful day that is warm and inviting and desirous to be around, or will you look gloomy and seem cold? People want the world to be nice, friendly, kind, and helpful to them—even while they themselves are partly cloudy at best, bordering on cold and gloomy. Sometimes that’s their normal! 

I know we sometimes wish we could change the weather and the weather forecast. We may not be able to do that, but we can change what kind of weather we look like. People would love for us to look like a beautiful, sunny, warm and inviting day!  

When Jesus became your Lord and Savior, the Holy Spirit took up residence within you. He wants to help you become that new person in Christ. Colossians 3:10 (NLT) says, “Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like Him.”

Do you want people to be friendly to you? Then make being friendly your habit and lifestyle! Proverbs 18:24 (NKJV) says, “A man who has friends must himself be friendly…”

Weather determines what we put on and take off. Likewise, God determines what we are to put on and take off in our life. Ephesians 4:30-32 (NLT) says, “And do not bring sorrow to God’s Holy Spirit by the way you live. Remember, He has identified you as His own… Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.”

And Colossians 3:12-14 (NLT) says, “Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony.” 

Jesus wants to help us become like a sunny day—even when we could feel gloomy. It’s possible if we let the Lord encourage us in His Word. If  we do, it will attract people to the light of Jesus in us! If that happens, you will get the chance to let them experience the touch of Jesus’ love flowing from you—even if it is just the seed of a smile and a “Hi.”

What kind of day do you like? What kind of day do you want to be today?

Philemon 1:20 (NKJV) “Yes, brother, let me have joy from you in the Lord; refresh my heart in the Lord”

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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