I had lunch yesterday with Craig Matherlee. We’ve been having lunch each Wednesday for a few months now. We do it to share our struggles, encourage one another (he’s doing most of the encouraging, truth be told), and to keep each other marching in the right direction — toward Jesus.
We talked yesterday about weak points in our spiritual life. For me, it’s reading the Word. I explained how I started off the year reading a devo that took me through the Bible in a year, but that it’s become dry and somewhat burdensome.
He told me he reads his Bible a little at a time, trying to read a passage, taking in its full context. That prompted me to go back to a faithful “friend”, the popular, “My Utmost for His Highest”, by Oswald Chambers.
This morning, Oswald talks about judging others. He says it is impossible to be in fellowship with God and be critical of others. He says the Holy Spirit is the only One in the position to criticize and He can do it without being hurtful and wounding.
He says, “There is always one more fact, which we know nothing about, in every person’s situation.”
That person who is grumpy behind the counter and we don’t like her tone of voice toward us… maybe her mom just died… maybe her child was just diagnosed with cancer… we don’t know. It’s a sobering thought.
Oswald says, “If I see a speck in your eye, that means I have a plank in mine.”
The more I sit here, the more I consider God’s holiness, the more I examine myself, my pride, my sin, my personality… the more I hate who I’ve become.
Oswald says at the end of today’s devo:
“I have never met of person I could despair of, or lose all hope for, after discerning what lies in me APART FROM THE GRACE OF GOD.” (my emphasis)
Thank you God for your grace. Thank you for not giving up on me. You haven’t, have you? Oh yeah… and thanks for bringing men like Craig Matherlee into my life.