December 13, 2018

Today at St Aidan’s
830 am – Morning Prayer
700 pm – Choir Practice

Advent Act of Kindness

Refrain from Gossiping

This Advent Act of Kindness is more difficult than it sounds. Most of us don’t consider ourselves gossips. With that said, we all too often find ourselves talking
about others. Let us take note today if we find ourselves slipping into conversations that really are best defined as gossip. Today we will try and exercise the courage to refrain from those conversations, or change the topic if we find ourselves caught into one.

Bible Reading
James 3 – Common English Bible (CEB)

My brothers and sisters, not many of you should become teachers, because
we know that we teachers will be judged more strictly. We all make mistakes
often, but those who don’t make mistakes with their words have reached full
maturity. Like a bridled horse, they can control themselves entirely. When we
bridle horses and put bits in their mouths to lead them wherever we want, we
can control their whole bodies.

Consider ships: They are so large that strong winds are needed to drive them.
But pilots direct their ships wherever they want with a little rudder. In the
same way, even though the tongue is a small part of the body, it boasts wildly.
Think about this: A small flame can set a whole forest on fire. The tongue is a
small flame of fire, a world of evil at work in us. It contaminates our entire
lives. Because of it, the circle of life is set on fire. The tongue itself is set on
fire by the flames of hell.

People can tame and already have tamed every kind of animal, bird, reptile,
and fish. No one can tame the tongue, though. It is a restless evil, full of
deadly poison. With it we both bless the Lord and Father and curse human

beings made in God’s likeness. Blessing and cursing come from the same
mouth. My brothers and sisters, it just shouldn’t be this way!
Both fresh water and salt water don’t come from the same spring, do they?
My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree produce olives? Can a grapevine
produce figs? Of course not, and fresh water doesn’t flow from a saltwater
spring either.

Are any of you wise and understanding? Show that your actions are good
with a humble lifestyle that comes from wisdom. However, if you have bitter
jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, then stop bragging and living in
ways that deny the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from
above. Instead, it is from the earth, natural and demonic. Wherever there is
jealousy and selfish ambition, there is disorder and everything that is evil.
What of the wisdom from above? First, it is pure, and then peaceful, gentle,
obedient, filled with mercy and good actions, fair, and genuine. Those who
make peace sow the seeds of justice by their peaceful acts.