It’s the time of the year for self reflection!!!
I often think about the words that God uses when He rebukes man. Hypocrite, fool, wicked, evil and perverse generation, o’ you faithless generation, you of little faith and so on!!! Very often when we read such words, we associate those characteristic traits to ‘someone else’ and not us!!! Perhaps to someone who is living a wild, rowdy life!!! As for us who go to church and do all the christian things well, we usually don’t associate such words!!! But if you take a close look at the Bible and read them carefully, most of these strong words, God uses to His own people, the children of Israel in the old testament and the church/disciples in the New testament!!! The so-called “Christian crowd”!!!
I understood something which was interesting to me!!! For example, when we talk of a wicked person, we associate that word to someone who is living an extreme life, like robbing or killing people or a rapist or someone to that degree!!! That’s man’s way of understanding a wicked person. But when God calls someone as wicked, it is usually a matter of the HEART. Luke 18 captures it best!!!
A tax collector and a Pharisee come to the church to pray. And there stands the Pharisee making a prayer: “I thank you that I am not like other people–robbers, evildoers, adulterers–or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’” Luke 18:11,12
“But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ Luke 18:13
Jesus concludes saying that the tax collector went home justified before God!!! Quite obviously the heart of the tax collector touched the heart of God, while the pride of the Pharisee didn’t get him anywhere!!!
As we walk this lenten season, I really do think that it is imperative for us to search our hearts and hear God’s opinion about us. We may be giving our tithes well, we may be doing church well… we may even be serving well… but if our hearts are lifted up to any degree, God sees it and who knows…the sinner out there may be more righteous than the ‘wicked’ in us!!!
Make this time of the year, a time of self-evaluation before the throne of God. God always shows you where you need to change!!! He is a good God and a loving Father who is tireless, when it comes to making us into the image of His Son, Christ Jesus the Nazarene!!!