Deacon Arlene Burton offers the Prayer of Encouragement for 5 December 2021 for our country, businesses, frontline and other workers. Deacon Burton owns the copyright to this post. We reprint here with her permission.
Hi Everyone! May God bless and favour you as you take your life’s journey. Just a reminder that if you or anyone you know is in need of prayer,. You can post your here on our website.
In the last encouragement, I spoke about the scene of a fatal accident that involved a truck with a flatbed. I indicated that the driver had to be run down and stopped because of his apparent lack of awareness as to what had transpired.
I spoke about the things that we do knowingly or unknowingly and the consequences that may emerge as a result. Afterwards, my thoughts went on a roll. My thoughts kept going over the issue of due care and due diligence. I also recalled the use of the word careful in certain biblical scriptures so let us delve into those concepts which may carry a financial, legal or ordinary meaning.
What is due diligence? What is due care? Some writers said:
It is “Action that is considered reasonable for people to be expected to take in order to keep themselves or others and their property safe” (Cambridge). “Due diligence is an investigation, audit, or review performed to confirm facts or details of a matter under consideration. In the financial world, due diligence requires an examination of financial records before entering into a proposed transaction with another party” (Investopedia). “The care that an ordinarily reasonable and prudent person would use under the same or similar circumstances” (Merriam).
The Difference according to Blacks
Due care is engaging in just, proper, and sufficient care based on given circumstances to show the absence of negligence. Additionally, due care is defined as sufficient care, implying a person has not been careless and has not violated a law. In non-legal terms, due care focuses on whether someone’s actions did not contribute to harm or violate the law. Due care focuses on whether someone did what they were supposed to do, regardless of the situation. For example, if you’re driving your car, you’re expected to engage in safe behaviour that prevents a car accident. You’re expected to follow the speed limit and not text or be otherwise engaged while driving.
“Due diligence, while similar to due care, has a slightly different meaning. Due diligence applies the idea of reasonableness to how a person acted under the particular set of circumstances at issue. In non-legal terms, due diligence focuses on whether the average person would have done the same thing if they were in the same situation” (Blacks).
“Due diligence focuses on whether someone did what other reasonable people would do based on the situation they were in. Returning to the driving analogy, if you get into an accident because you hit a car stopped at a traffic light, people are going to ask a lot of questions about your actions beyond proving that you followed the law. Even if you weren’t speeding or texting, you’ll need to show that you engaged in due diligence. In this example, due diligence might mean situational awareness, like being aware that the light was red” (Blacks).
Based on what the above writers had to say, I am picking up that we must be reasonable in actions; that our actions must not cause harm to anyone; that we must be compliant with the laws of the land; that we must ensure that regardless of what happens, we can show that we did everything within reason to prevent or minimize any form of negative implications. Therefore, the driver of the truck mentioned earlier may not have broken the stoplight etc. Even then, he had to demonstrate that he acted within the confines of the law, and within reason, in the eyes of the ordinary man.
The Word and Careful
As I continued in reflection, I am reminded of the many times that the scriptures pointed to persons who were not careful and the personal and widespread implications. One passage said that “..Jehu was not careful to keep the law of the Lord, the God of Israel, with all his heart. He did not turn away from the sins of Jeroboam, which he had caused Israel to commit.” (2 Kings 10:31, NIV).
However, there were other kings who were careful. Some of them did it to a certain degree. Some of them started out doing good in the eyes of God but faltered. In the latter case, Hezekiah was one such person.
How did Hezekiah’s start? The scriptures tell us that Hezekiah “… did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, just as his father David had done.” (2 Kings 20:3, NIV). “Hezekiah trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel. There was no one like him among all the kings of Judah, either before him or after him.” (2 Kings 20:3, NIV).
What Happened? “In those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death. The prophet Isaiah, son of Amoz, went to him and said, ‘This is what the Lord says: Put your house in order because you are going to die. You will not recover.’” (2 Kings 20:1, NIV).
His Response – “ Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, “Remember Lord, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in your eyes.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly.” (2 Kings 20:2-3, NIV).
The Lord’s Response- “Before Isaiah had left the middle court, the word of the Lord came to him. “Go back and tell Hezekiah, the ruler of my people, ‘This is what the Lord, the God of your father David, says. I have heard your prayer and seen your tears. I will heal you…” (2 Kings 20: 4-5, NIV).
The Careless Move – “Hezekiah received the envoys and showed them all that was in his storehouses…” (2 Kings 20:13, NIV).
The Consequence – “The time will surely come when everything in your palace, and all that your predecessors have stored up until this day, will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left, says the Lord.” (2 Kings 20:17, NIV).
Ultimate Revelation and Sacrifice – The prophecy concerning Hezekiah’s actions was fulfilled and much happened but God had a great plan for humankind. He made the ultimate sacrifice because of His love. The writer of Titus speaks loudly to:
God’s love -“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit.” (Titus 3:4-5, NIV).
God’s Sacrifice – “ whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.” (Titus 3:6-7, NIV).
The Emphasis and Charge – “This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone.” (Titus 3:8, NIV).
Think about what it really means to exercise due care, due diligence. You know, from the beginning of time, God has been trying with us but are we careful to do what is required; to be the sons and daughters in whom He is well pleased. His love for us never ceases even in the midst of our unfaithfulness. Wow! Man…! What a God?
Think bout it, chat bout, then decide what you are going to do about it.
Let us pray:
Heavenly Father, we thank You for this another day which gives us the privilege and opportunity to acknowledge Your greatness. We praise, honour and glorify Your name. We thank You for sending Your Son to die so that a lost world could be saved. Thank You, Lord, for the shed blood, the cross and Your brokenness. Help us not to forget Your benefits because it is You who has forgiven all of our sins and healed our diseases. You save our lives from destruction and crown us with Your loving-kindness and the multitude of Your tender mercies. You satisfy our desires with good things.
Lord, we come in the name of Jesus asking for Your mercy on us. We ask that You forgive all of our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Create in us clean hearts and renew the right spirit within us. Cast us not away from Your presence but grant us obedient spirits to sustain us. Lord, help us to forgive those who wronged us. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from all evil.
Lord, it is a time of year when many people would want to exploit, kill and destroy. It is a time when we celebrate You. It is also a time when many suffer the loss of loved ones. Yet it is a time to focus on acknowledging and celebrating the coming of Your Son, Jesus Christ.
As we celebrate His coming, help us to be careful to reflect on what it really means. Help us to look out for the next person, to empower and not belittle, to give, to support and bless those around us, to worship You. May Your glory, Lord, endure forever. May You rejoice in Your works— You who look at the earth, and it trembles, who touches the mountains, and they smoke. Awesome are You Lord. Our souls praise You, Lord.
Lord, we lift up to you the leaders in our country. We pray especially for our church leaders, the Honourable Prime Minister of Jamaica Andrew Holness, Minister of Health and Wellness, Christopher Tufton, Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Nigel Clarke, health workers and support staff, Minister of Education, Youth and the Environment, Fayval Williams; Minister of National Security, Horace Chang and his team, Minister of Justice, Delroy Chuck, and the leader of the opposition Mark Golding and his team. We also remember the judges in our congregation, Paula Blake Powell and Grace Henry McKenzie. Lord, let not evil rule over us. Grant to our leaders the wisdom and courage to do what is in our best interest. Grant creativity and strategies that will help us to maneuver through these unusual times. Protect and continue to provide for us.
Lord, we remember those who are not well, especially Deacon Loy Evans, Sisters Nicole Evans and Kadine Stewart. We also present to you those among us who are on the usual sick and shut-in list, as well as Sisters Iris Lawrence, Valerie Smellie, Mary Clarke, Cherrie Lee, Lelith James, Jennifer Nicholson, Virginia Muir, Marville (Cherry) Murray (Sister Iris Lawrence’s daughter), Janet Chen-Young, Joyce Bailey, Lucille Alexander, Jhada Graham, Cherrie Lee, Merlena Hartley Roberts (Sister Nicole Roberts Mother); Brother George Gabbidon, Brother Lloyd Trusty and his niece Delores Brown, Sister Dawn Ashley’s parents, Mr, Delorn Dixon (Sister Rachael Dixon’s husband), Brother Cornel Richards and family; and any member or family member who needs healing and comfort. Lord, grant healing, strength and peace.
We remember those who are mourning the loss of loved ones: Elder Mary Clarke and Brother Jeremy Richards (Dionne). May the God of comfort sustain you and your families through these times.
Lord, we continue to keep in prayer Sister Jhanelle Black who is currently in the United Kingdom (UK) pursuing further studies in Dentistry.
Lord, we ask that You comfort our hearts and minds as we continue to grapple with the many challenges of these times. Saturate us with Your peace, Your presence and Your power. Help us to realize that we are overcomers and grant us victory in our circumstances.
In Jesus’ name we pray with thanksgiving.
Our Prayers of Encouragement are for everyone. Therefore, please contact us with your request if you also need prayer or comfort. We would be so very happy to share with you.
Grace Missionary Church is a member of The Missionary Church Association in Jamaica.