We all have a hobby or two; tending to those things that eat up time or resources with a view toward income, or just plain satisfaction.
Some knit, paint, write, fix buildings or cars, install walls, gardens, you name it, and most are novices, but have you ever considered that it is not only possible, but highly likely that you are an expert in an area that you would rather like to avoid?
A christian is told to ‘do all to the glory of God,’ and while this may appear easy, I suggest it is way too difficult, and darn near impossible. A non christian does what he feels to be right, and has an excuse. To somebody not given much, much can not be expected, but we who have been given much, tend to give so little. Am I sure? Oh yeah, for honesty is an arrow that always finds its mark.
When you sat down to eat your last meal, did you consider your neighbor and whether he had similar nourishment? When you purchased your last shirt, dress, jacket, purse, did you consider your neighbor’s plight? How many thousands of instances can we cite daily that prove our heart is divided. We do NOT love our neighbor as ourselves, therefore we fall short with loving God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.
But we make the grand mistake that all make, thinking we can actually DO this. The word of the Lord was piercing when asked, ‘what shall I DO to inherit eternal life,’ and the Lord answered discreetly ‘What does the law say?’ And the arrogant answer was given, ‘All these have I kept from my youth up.’ Really, are you going with that?
The law proves ALL hopeless and helpless, yet the ninety and nine think they need no repentance. Do we understand this? This was the religious mind stating they have no need for repentance. In short, a gift of life can not be earned, and pride blinds the mind from seeing clearly.
This was an inflated opinion of self, and when this beast rears its ugly head before the Lord, you can be sure that pride is the father.
Man has become a master at this hobby: pride polishing; taking dirt and putting a shine so the ego can be front and center.
So the stellar law-keeper and master of Israel Nicodemus was puzzled when told: ‘that which is born of the flesh is flesh,’ and was further rebuked for not knowing the nature of a spiritual man. Oh how man, and especially the religious man is adept at putting a spit shine on his image.
When a man or woman has no time to go after the ‘one,’ that wayward lamb or lost sheep just crying for attention from a caretaker of souls, somebody to help bind up the wounds of life, then we could possibly be ‘polishing our pride.’ Sports events have wreaked havoc in christians lives and homes; God forbid I see to the needy while the ‘big game’ is on.
For God’s sake, even the pulpit is a broadcast booth; how the spirit of God must be vexed and grieved. I remind you, the non christian cannot be charged with such a trivial offense, but the rest of us should be at least shamed.
Pride keeps people from seeking the Lord, and pride keeps believers from staying close to the Lord. Review your opinion of yesterday, and admit the honesty of an unrehearsed answer; have you cultivated a spirit of pride at all? Have you taken this pride and fashioned it into a trophy? Take note of your words and speech, did you scribe more words into that monument of yourself? Oh how we fall short, yet, yet, He giveth more grace.
In spite of our shortcomings, there is a friend who sticketh closer than brother, who in spite of all our failures, returns not a word of wrath, condemns us not, and helps us with a soft rebuke of tenderness, meant to show the caressing hands of love. Is it any wonder that the song-writer sings: what a Saviour!