Lesson 3, Devotion 1
“If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over.” – Matthew 18:15
Textbooks. Desks. Gossip. Backpacks. Rumors. Classrooms. Pencils. Sidewalks. Lies. All of these are things you will find on a typical school campus. They are pretty universal and can be found at any school. While most of these things are helpful and useful to those who are attending that school, three are not. No one wants or likes to be the subject of gossip, rumors, or lies. These can be incredibly damaging. They are also completely avoidable.
Read again the passage you discussed in small group two weeks ago, Matthew 18:15-17. In this passage, Jesus is giving His followers a set of instructions dealing with relationships. These verses are found within a section of verses and passages that Jesus spoke to His followers not long before His death. He is teaching what life in His kingdom should be like.
Jesus is very clear on how He expects His followers to handle difficult relationships. There is very little to interpret or “figure out.” Yet so many times, we choose to turn to our friends and share our perspective or our side of a story rather than confronting the person we should be talking to. When we choose to talk to others as our first step, we choose to disobey Christ’s instructions.
Do you have a difficult relationship that needs to be dealt with? Have you hurt someone by choosing to gossip or talk to others instead of talking to the one you have conflict with? How can you choose to be obedient and restore this relationship? Spend a few moments praying that God would show you if there is someone you need to talk to now. If not, pray that He would continue to show you how to have an attitude of humility and how you can choose to obey His instructions for relationships.