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  • Scott Johnson

Subtraction Stinks



Paul writes a letter to Philemon; this message is short and to the point. But through this small often overlooked book we receive a big statement, one that is often neglected.

4 I always thank my God when I pray for you, Philemon, 5 because I keep hearing about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all of God’s people. 6 And I am praying that you will put into action the generosity that comes from your faith as you understand and experience all the good things we have in Christ. 7 Your love has given me much joy and comfort, my brother, for your kindness has often refreshed the hearts of God’s people. (Philemon 1:4-7)

Paul recognizes something in Philemon; he was a refreshing person. Someone that encourages others within the church but also encouraging others outside of the local church, like Paul. What an excellent quality to be known for, encouraging, uplifting, refreshing, loyal, and loving. I like those words; I want some of that.

What you do and how you react determines how you are perceived.

Are you known for that? Or are you known more for how you drain others, leaving them discouraged and stressed? What you do and how you react determines how you are perceived. As much as I want to be known for the qualities that Philemon has, I know that I can be recognized for the opposite. I keep things real, like on the real-world (is that still a thing?). By that what I mean is I share my opinions, thoughts, first reactions open without a filter. The problem with that is I do not keep others in mind, how will they react? How will this impact them?

If we want to be a person known for these desirable qualities we must use them in our actions and statements. Think first of others, how your actions will impact others. Instead of being the person that continues to share the bad news with no celebration, start celebrating! Encourage those around you, they are awesome (heck, they are created in God’s image) so there is probably a lot you can celebrate them for.

Instead of being a person that drains others,

be a person that adds.

Add love, hope, encouragement.

So today and every day moving forward. Instead of being a person that drains others, be a person that adds. Add love, hope, encouragement.

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