Listen to this devotional:
James 5:16 – Therefore, make it your habit to confess your sins to one another and to pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. (International Standard Version – ISV)
I love watching wild birds — whether they are flying across the sky, or hopping around my yard, or swimming in a lake. Recently, while going for a walk, I stopped and rested on a park bench by a small lake. I was excited to see hundreds of ducks swimming around, enjoying the warm day.
Suddenly, two ducks were attacking each other and squawking loudly. For some reason, they were having a disagreement. I thought that these ducks were living in community, and yet, there were disagreements that needed to be voiced. They never denied the issues — they were very vocal about them. I sat and watched them, amazed at what I was seeing. As suddenly as the disagreement had started, it was over, and those two ducks were swimming around together, accepting one another once again. They kept at it for several minutes until they were both settled with the outcome.
That is when the rest of the community of ducks started quacking very loudly. It was as if they were saying, "We are glad the disagreement is over, and we are here to support both of you." How interesting to see that in the animal world! No one told them what to do — they just did it.
How are we doing with disagreements between fellow Christians? They are sure to happen in any community. Do we confront these problems — or do we deny them? Do we confess our sins to each other? Let's learn from the ducks to be open and honest about our struggles with each other. Are we supportive when others are having issues with a brother or sister? Do we pray for others who are struggling? Again, let's learn from the ducks.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, how we love the created world that You have made for us to enjoy. We can learn so many lessons by observing the wildlife. Problems between us are real. They don't have to eat away at us as we stuff them down, though. We can come to You with them; we can present the issue kindly with the other party. We can't do life on our own, Jesus. Help us. Fill us with Your Holy Spirit to guide us in these real life issues. Thank You. Amen.