(Photo Credit: Scene from the movie Saved!)
Yesterday, our Asst. Pastor preached his sermon on Sin, of course giving examples of sin. As he spoke one after the other my mind started to say "well that's not me and never has been." After church I meditated on the message and like a light bulb the Holy Spirit convicted me! Sure...I wasn't guilty of those sins but did that make me sinless? "Absolutely not", I thought, "no one is sinless" and then it hit me. How many of my sins do I partake of on a daily basis and never pay attention to. For example, judgemental thoughts, entertaining gossip, and etc. The funny part is some of these sins I have endulged in my entire life out of sheer upbringing.
How many of us were raised to be careful of the company we keep, usually coupled with the saying "birds of feather flock together"? What I realized in myself, was that it created in me an introverted attitude, not one created by shyness but one based on my judgements and sometimes, prejudgements of others. This gave way to another thought...am I at times self-righteous? So, I took to the bible. Using the table of content, I found my way to Luke 18.
In this chapter, Jesus gives a parable of two men, one a pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee began to pray saying I thank you Lord that I am not this and that and that I am definitely not like this tax collector (of course this is me paraphrasing but this is the jist of it), while the tax collector silently prayed saying Lord forgive me for I am a sinner. Jesus then states "for he who exalts himself will be humbled and he who is humble will be exalted." Wow! Wow! Wow! I, in that moment at church and so many others was that Pharisee. I had thanked the lord on my pedestal while half-knowingly condemned others in my pride.
If you find yourself guilty of this fret not! I am thankful to say that we serve a forgiving and merciful God who allows room for error as long as you repent and work on it. Therefore, I know where I need work and I hope you can find some too, after all as Christians it is our life-long job to strive to be more like Christ.