Thursday, February 20, 2014

365 Days with God - Day 62: No Excuse

I'm giving myself a challenge. Read the Bible each day for a whole year, following the ESV Study Guide 1-year plan. Each day, I will post whatever God has revealed to me in His Word, and how it is changing me. A friend of mine once said that nothing has changed her life as much as reading the bible each day - and I'm excited for how this will change me. Join me on an adventure into the heart of God - and day by day, we can learn more about who He is and what that means to us!

- Andy Catts

Day 62, February 20, 2014
Readings: Psalm 62, Exodus 6:10-30, Exodus 7:1-13, 2 Chronicles 35:1-19, Romans 2:1-16

Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgement on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things. We know that the judgement of God rightly falls on those who practice such things. Do you suppose, O man - you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself - that you will escape the judgement of God? Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God's kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? (Romans 2:1-4)

That certainly didn't need any flashy, wordy intro. Hard hitting from the get go, Paul quickly tears apart those who would judge others. Yet here I sit, having judged people left and right. I compare myself to others as if I have some leg to stand on, as if somehow I'm not just as big of a screwup that's in need of God's grace.

It's so easy, isn't it? Easy for me to feel better about myself because I can think that I'm better than someone else. And it's easy to convince myself that I'm not doing it either, because I'm just wishing that they would live a more fulfilling I am. Wait. Suddenly my life of comparison and judgement doesn't seem very fulfilling. It merely seems like I'm trying to convince myself that it is, because of how it stacks up in comparison to others.

But God. As so many redemption and restoration stories start in the bible, so can mine. Our God is rich with kindness, forbearance and patience. Not so that I can keep on judging, and sinning, but so I can learn, grow and change. So that I can stop judging and start loving. So that I can recognize my own predisposition to sin, and instead of trying to make myself feel better by comparing/judging, I can ask God to drive it out of me, and help me because I need help desperately. I don't have the answers. I'm not better than anyone else. But I know the God who is, and He loves me. And he promises to be the ultimate judge, the righteous one.

He will render to each one according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. (Romans 2:6-8)

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