In my last post I Resolve to…, I stated that our relationship with Christ should be a daily resolution—“Resolve to make Christ the center of your life and the rest will take care of itself.” The next day, I opened up week five of Priscilla Shirer’s Bible study, He Speaks to Me and was convicted in yet another area that needs work. It seems the closer I draw to Christ, the more I’m aware of my own sinful nature. Ouch!
1 John 2:3-4 says This is how we are sure that we have come to know Him: by keeping His commands. The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” yet doesn’t keep His commands is a liar and the truth is not in him.
In an effort to be obedient to God, my husband has made some huge transitional changes on the work front over the last few months. Being self-employed, any decisions he makes affects not just him, but his entire staff. Because of this, he asked me to step in and partner with him through the reorganizational process. The fact that I’m more Old Testament (law) and he’s New Testament (grace) could have easily caused more conflict than harmony as we’ve trekked through this emotional mind field. And although God’s brought our differing personalities together for a reason, it’s taken many heart-felt conversations with Him for me to support some of Chris’s truly gracious decisions—decisions that I ultimately agreed with, thanks be to God.
But being a woman whose mind resembles a mass of spaghetti, I’ve revisited those decisions over and over again—decisions that went above and beyond to bless another individual. And when those decisions weren’t met with gratitude, but instead, entitlement and disdain, resentment began to take hold of my heart, and I felt justified in speaking about it. And to be honest, attempting to make Chris see the folly of his grace.
In John Bevere’s book Bait of Satan, he writes, “Pride causes you to view yourself as a victim. Your attitude becomes, ‘I was mistreated and misjudged; therefore, I am justified in my behavior.’ Because you believe you are innocent and falsely accused, you hold back forgiveness. Though your true heart condition is hidden from you, it is not hidden from God. Just because you were mistreated, you do not have permission to hold on to an offense. Two wrongs do not make a right!”
Ironically, when I first read this last week, I didn’t realize it was me God was speaking to through these words. I thought it was meant for the aforementioned entitled and disdainful individual. I’m so quick to judge others for the speck in their eyes when I can barely see through the plank in my own! But when Priscilla Shirer’s study directed me to James 5:9, it became crystal clear. Brothers, do not complain about one another, so that you will not be judged. Priscilla Shirer writes, “We cultivate the presence of God in our lives not merely through our actions, but through our hearts and attitudes. We must develop continuous humility before Him.”
When I take the time to remember that I did nothing to earn Christ’s sacrifice on the cross for me, I am humbled and ashamed by my poor attitude. I easily forget all the blessings that God has so graciously granted me—from my amazingly grace-filled husband to my own weakness in which I must depend on God’s strength. There is nothing I can do for another that can ever compare to all that’s been done for me through Jesus Christ.