THE TRIANGLES OF LIFE
T. PIERCE BROWN
Life is composed of thinking, talking and acting. Man is a triune being; body, soul and spirit (1 Thessalonians5:23). God is a triune being; Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19). Time is past, present and future. Space is height, length and breadth. We move in three directions, up, down or around. We often speak of things as good, bad or indifferent. We could continue the list, but today we want to consider the relationship between our thinking, talking and acting in practical application.
First, God says, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7). Any effort to change a person’s life without changing the way he thinks will be fruitless. However, one does not necessarily have to start with changing the way a person thinks. One may start with trying to change the way a person speaks or acts.
Second, God says, “For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned” (Matthew12:37). So, a person who is speaking in the wrong way, regardless of the cause, needs to have his way of speaking changed.
Third, God says in Romans 2:6 in speaking of the judgment of God, “who will render to every man according to his works.” In 2 Corinthians 5:10 we find, “For we must all be make manifest before the judgment-seat of Christ; that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” So a person must change his actions if he is to be pleasing to God.
The point we want to emphasize now is that in this triangle of life, if one can get a person to change any side of the triangle in the proper direction, he can influence a change in the other two sided, for they are intimately related. It may be that the first thing we can change is a person’s actions. If we can get him to act differently and see what difference it makes, he may change the way he thinks. We must not be deceived into thinking that changing a man’s actions is sufficient, however.
It may be that we can influence or compel a person to change the way he talks. If we can keep him talking properly long enough, it may well change the way he thinks and acts. In any case, it should be the desire of the preacher or teacher to start where he can with the person, whether it be in the realm of thinking, talking or acting, and try to get that side of the triangle changed for good. A teacher who is aware of this interrelationship between thinking, talking and acting will be able to do a better job of molding his students lives. If we can work on either side of the triangle, let us thank God and take courage. If we can work on all three of them at the same time, let us rejoice and be exceeding glad, for our reward will be great.