Saturday, July 26, 2014
What must go through a woman's mind when she gets a call like that? Does she start thinking about her life and all of the people who really matter to her? Does she think about her children? Our mind can take us all kinds of places when we receive news of a life-changing nature.
The woman's mammogram had indeed revealed a tiny lump. Surgery was quickly scheduled. Time is important! The doctor removed the lump and it was examined. Benign! Whew!! Thank God!!! Then her life returns to normal. She goes on doing what she has always done. Except that NOW she keeps a more watchful eye on things, examining herself more frequently than she did before. And perhaps she appreciates life more now than she once did.
Examining ourselves is an important part of a Christian's life too but we don't seem to spend a lot of time doing that. We tend to just go on assuming things are okay, like a woman who never examines herself or gets a mammogram. We go to church and we believe there is a God, and we toss up a prayer once in a while when we need to. Otherwise we consider ourselves to be spiritually healthy. But are we?
God's word tells us that we are to examine ourselves.
"5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test! 6 I hope you will find out that we have not failed the test. 7 But we pray to God that you may not do wrong—not that we may appear to have met the test, but that you may do what is right, though we may seem to have failed. 8 For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. 9 For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong. Your restoration is what we pray for. 10 For this reason I write these things while I am away from you, that when I come I may not have to be severe in my use of the authority that the Lord has given me for building up and not for tearing down." - 2 Corinthians 13:5-10
When Paul wrote that letter to the Corinthians he was writing to a people group who were still living their sinful lifestyle as if nothing was wrong.
"21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.
24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen." -Romans 1: 21-25
Unfortunately, we humans do not come with warning devices that sound an alarm when we're about to do something stupid. We just go ahead and do them and the regret it later. Or worse, we just keep doing stupid things.
Before I became a believer I did stupid things. I can see that now. At the time I didn't think anything about the idolatry, the self-worship. But now, through the lens of God's Holy Spirit, my sinful nature seems rather obvious, looking back.
Reading God's Word, The Bible, is life changing for new believers and unbelievers alike. God uses His Word to convict us and we begin to examine ourselves, hopefully taking steps to correct the wrongs.
God's Word is the perfect mirror. Read it. Then take a look iat yourself. See anything that doesn't line up with scripture? Get rid of it. It's called repentance. We are told to "walk in the light as He is in the light" (1 John 1:7) How are we doing with that? Take a step back and examine yourself. I try to do that every day by reading His Word and comparing what I do in this world with what Jesus did. I will never match His standard, but I promise I will never give up trying to do so.
Consider Jesus' sacrifice on the cross . . . for you, then try to do otherwise.
I encourage you to watch this video. It's long but very convicting. Then examine yourself, as the Bible says, and take a step closer to leading a humble life, dedicated to Christ, not the example this world sets for us. We are called to be holy, set apart (1 Peter1:16). Make today be the first day YOU walk in the light. Come out of the darkness . . . and live.
Examine Yourselves by Paul Washer