Faithful counselors are conscientious; they exercise great care in guiding others with the Word of God. Additionally, they seek to listen well, speak truth graciously, and rely upon the power of the Holy Spirit to accomplish His transforming work in the hearts and minds of those whom they help. However, as admirable as all of this is, the neglect of our own obedience is a real danger. It is possible to go through the motions, teaching what we know is good counsel while at the same time failing to consider the relationship that our own personal Bible study and daily walk with the Lord have upon the effectiveness of our ministry. For this reason, I’d like us to ponder one simple verse hidden away in one of the books of the Minor Prophets. Ezra 7:10 reads, “For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel.”
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