Today's reading is about the Manipulating Tongue. The passage refers to Delilah, the manipulative woman who was the downfall of Samson. The writer says, "while manipulators are subtle and make every attempt to cloak their self-serving motives . . . "
I don't think I intentionally try to manipulate people When I was practicing law that was such a part of the 'game' that it was exhausting to try to keep up with it.
However, today I am asking the Lord to show me where I might be less-consciously trying to manipulate people or situations.
- Do I cook a favorite meal in order to curry favor with another person or because I genuinely want to love that person?
- Do I offer help because I really want to help or because I want to be closer to 'the action"?
- Do I join a conversation because I really have something useful and God-honoring to add or am I just trying to show how smart I am?
- Do I remind my children to do things because I think it will do any good or because I want them to know how annoyed I am with their forgetfulness?
Trying to manipulate situations and people is ultimately a failure of trust in the Lord to handle it. And His word is clear,
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
Lean not on your own understanding,
In all your ways acknowledge HIM,
and He will make your path straight."
The writer concludes with this affirmation, "Because I am in right standing with God, He surrounds me with favor. Therefore, I have no need to manipulate anyone for personal gain or advantage."
Told you this would be a challenge...stay tuned.