Don’t Jump to Conclusions

Oct 16, 2020

‘I will guard my ways that I may not sin with my tongue...’Psalm 39:1 NAS

We all fail from time to time, even the best of us. When John D Rockefeller ran the Standard Oil Company one of his senior executives made a mistake that cost over US$2,000,000. The other executives thought Rockefeller would come down heavy on him and probably fire him. But he didn’t. Before he called the man in, he sat down, took a notepad and wrote across the top of it: ‘Points in favour of this man’. Then he listed the man’s strengths, including how he’d once helped the company make the right decision and earn them millions of dollars. One of the senior executives who witnessed it later said, ‘Whenever I am tempted to rip into someone, I force myself to sit down and compile a list of the good qualities they have. By the time I have finished, I have the right perspective. And best of all, my anger is under control. I can’t tell you how many times this habit has prevented me from committing one of life’s costliest mistakes—losing my temper. I recommend it to anyone who must deal with people.’ So before you jump to conclusions about someone, stop and ask God for wisdom, then sit down and make a list of their best qualities. If you do you’ll often come to a different conclusion. One thing is for sure, you’ll approach them with the right attitude and you won’t say things you’ll later regret. Obviously the Psalmist had learned that lesson: ‘I will guard my ways that I may not sin with my tongue.’

SoulFood: 2 Sam 12:1–14:20, John 4:13–26, Ps 32, Pro 23:29–35
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright ©

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