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Everybody likes to receive praise.

It gives us reassurance that we are valued by others.

There’s a problem, though.

We sometimes view the praise of others almost as an emotional skeleton. If we lack it, we collapse into an emotionally crippled state, able to do little.

If someone needs a pat on the back or they’ll stop functioning, then their measure of inner weakness is profound and in serious need of an overhaul.

Hopefully, we’re not in this emotionally needy condition.

For if we don’t avoid it, we run the serious risk of being trapped by the prideful thirst for praise.

God makes it quite clear that our response to praise is an indicator of our Christian character.

“Fire tests the purity of silver and gold, but a person is tested by being praised.” (Proverbs 27:21)

Here’s how I look at the topic of praise from others — yes, I should allow it to encourage me, but never should I count on it to empower me.

My strength should always come from the Lord, not from the words of people.

For people are flawed and can’t be counted upon to ALWAYS offer the words and Holy Spirit help that I need to stand firm and step forward for the Kingdom.

I try to be the most reliable, honorable, supportive pastor possible for the people in my congregation. But I fall short of that goal sometimes for a variety of reasons.

That’s why I seek to encourage others, but I know that I’m not the one empowering them.

That’s God’s job.

So, let’s welcome encouraging words from others and verbally extend our appreciation. Let’s offer words of encouragement to others as they walk in the empowerment of the Father in heaven.

Let’s make sure, however, that the status and direction of our faith is based on the strength we receive from God, not the abundance of back-patting words from people.

As always, I love you

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One Response to “Morning Devotion: Flaming praise”

  1. Wow…. I am blessed…. Thank you pastor.
    thank you for remind me…. Jesus loves you.
    Tasha Darsono
    Bali Indonesia

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