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Finally my brothers and sisters, let me close with these words. Rejoice, change, encourage each other, and walk in unity. Then the God of peace and love shall be with and keep you.
(2 Cor. 13:11)
Have you experienced this before? I think most have. You need to buy something and you've had two people present you with a product that interests you.

The first person completes his presentation and then gives you the price—a pretty good one at that. Then the second person makes his presentation, but he knows you've already seen his competitor's product.

Therefore, he decides to spend more time and energy in an attempt to convince you that his product is better—and worth more—than the other one you just looked at.

All the while, you are sitting there impatiently thinking, "Come on, just give me the bottom line. How much is it?"

Cutting To The Chase
We live in a bottom-line society. USA Today and CNN news have based their entire news distribution processes upon the premise of quickly getting to the bottom line. We only seem to want the facts—and we want them fast.

We move through many things quickly, probably too fast. People move in and out of relationships to quickly—we just want to get to the bottom line (sex) even though that avenue is totally contrary to God's Word.

In business, relationships, conversation, or whatever, most people just want the bottom line, "Come on, let's get to the point" as quickly as possible.

The Apostle Paul closed out his second epistle to the church of Corinth thinking of the bottom line. In the scripture verse above, he begins to close by saying, "finally my brothers and sisters let me close with these words..." What was he saying? He was saying, "Let me give you the bottom line."

Foundational Principles
What were his bottom line words of counsel? They were powerful words that when meditated and expounded on by the Holy Spirit can become foundational principles that will greatly help you. His words were this. "Rejoice, change, encourage each other, and walk in unity. Then the God of peace and love shall be with and keep you."

His first bottom-line word was "rejoice." There are hundreds of reasons in God to rejoice but one comes to mind that I think is outstanding. It has to do with the Psalm 25:8 which says, "Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in his ways."

Why should we look at that as a point of rejoicing? Here's why.

This verse is saying that God will take someone who is doing something wrong and doesn't know how to do it right and teach them how to do it right. That is a promise to you always. No matter what it is that we do not know how to do, if we seek God, He will instruct us in His ways—in what we need to know.

Secondly the Apostle Paul says, "change." You may hate change but change is good. It doesn't always mean a totally different way of doing something. It's more likely to mean that you can continue to improve upon who you are as a person while you improve upon what you are doing in life.

Second Corinthians 3:18 says, "As we learn to reflect the Lord's glory, we are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." This means we are the same person but as we let the Spirit of God work in us, we are forever changing to be more like and to reflect the image of God!

Next, Paul said, "encourage." We all need encouragement. Let me say this again. We all need encouragement and we need it constantly. We get tired of meaningless "ra-ra" and hype.

What we all desire is a true source of promise and encouragement. That is the promise of God's Word. It's the only true source of encouragement that is supernatural and life changing. On top of that it's anointed and has the power to break the lies and deceptions of Satan.

That means we have to put that encouragement from God (His promises) in our heart each day and then share those promises that bring encouragement with others.
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
(1 Thess. 5:11)

The Lord God has given me his words of wisdom so that I may know what I should say to those who are weary.
(Isa. 50:4)
Finally, the Apostle Paul's bottom line word is unity. Whoever it is you're relating to—your wife, your children, your boss, or your employees—get on the same page and work as a team. Have zero tolerance from yourself for division and strife. Demand from yourself that you lead with thoughts, words, and actions of unity and preferring one another.

Slam the door shut on division and strife. It's a back door to Satan's devices. James 3:16 says, "For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work." That means you've created a playground for the devil.

Psalm 133:1,3 says, "How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity...For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore." God is in unity. It is the river and flow of where God's blessing is that will expedite the journey to where you want to go!

These are the Apostle Paul's bottom line principles that we should live our life from daily.
  • Rejoice. God will teach you the way!
  • Change. Continuous improvement is a God plan!
  • Encouragement. Sharing the real source of encouragement—the promises of God—are the breath of life you need and others need from you!
  • Unity. Walk in unity. It's the flowing river of blessing to expedite where God wants to take you!

Copyright © www.FreshManna.org
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Tim Burt
Web site: Todays Fresh Manna
 
Pastor Tim became a part of the leadership team at Living Word Christian Center in 1984 and served as Associate Pastor from 1989 to 2017. He and His wife Renee, also a Pastor at Living Word, resigned, feeling impressed by God to pursue the tremendous growth of their ministry "Fresh Manna," as well as teaching conferences and seminars, and increasing their involvement on the mission field through Tim & Renee Burt Ministries.
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