Posts Tagged ‘judgement’

Jesus in Disguise

My blogging friend over at Amorelle – Just Keeping it Real posted this story on her blog today. It’s really powerful, and I wanted to share it with all of you.

Onward and Upward,

Sarah

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Pastor Jeremiah Steepek (pictured) transformed himself into a homeless person and went to the 10,000 member church that he was to be introduced as the head pastor at that morning. He walked around his soon to be church for 30 minutes while it was filling with people for service, only 3 people out of the 7-10,000 people said hello to him. He asked people for change to buy food – NO ONE in the church gave him change. He went into the sanctuary to sit down in the front of the church and was asked by the ushers if he would please sit n the back. He greeted people to be greeted back with stares and dirty looks, with people looking down on him and judging him.

As he sat in the back of the church, he listened to the church announcements and such. When all that was done, the elders went up and were excited to introduce the new pastor of the church to the congregation. “We would like to introduce to you Pastor Jeremiah Steepek.” The congregation looked around clapping with joy and anticipation. The homeless man sitting in the back stood up and started walking down the aisle. The clapping stopped with ALL eyes on him. He walked up the altar and took the microphone from the elders (who were in on this) and paused for a moment then he recited,

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

‘The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.

After he recited this, he looked towards the congregation and told them all what he had experienced that morning. Many began to cry and many heads were bowed in shame. He then said, “Today I see a gathering of people, not a church of Jesus Christ. The world has enough people, but not enough disciples. When will YOU decide to become disciples?”

He then dismissed service until next week.

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Wheat or Tares? Who Could Really Judge..

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Happy Monday, friends! Be blessed today as you make the purposeful decision to show love to those who may not share in the same sin as you.

-Sarah
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Today’s devo selection:

Be Careful of Who You Judge
By Calvary Chapel Boise/Bob Caldwell

Today’s Reading: Matthew 13:24-30, Matthew 13:36-43

Key Verse: “The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one. The enemy who sowed them is the devil, the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. Therefore as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of this age.” –Matthew 13:38-40

It is critical for each of us to understand how the Kingdom of God operates in this age of rebellion against God. It is common for believers to try to separate themselves from the “world” in a way that at times can be counter-productive. In this parable of the sower, there is a reference to tares. They look similar to wheat and, in this parable, are growing among the wheat the sower planted. The wheat represents the people who belong to the Kingdom of God and the tares represent those who belong to the Kingdom of Darkness. Jesus warns us not to try to separate the tares, lest the wheat be uprooted as well.

Yet often well-meaning believers do just the opposite. We sometimes try to use our limited ability to judge the true nature of a person and then try to “weed them out” of the Kingdom of God. “Who are the wheat? Who are the tares?” become the questions we want answered. Yet if we pursue this process we often see genuine believers uprooted and deeply hurt. Conversely, we may honor some people who may in fact be “tares.” Humility requires us to defer to Christ as the only true judge. Of course, this doesn’t mean we compromise truth. Obviously some people by their own words and deeds make their status as “wheat” or “tares” very obvious. But often a person’s heart condition—in relationship to truth—may not be as easy to determine as we think.

By God’s grace, His “wheat seeds” are sown throughout the world to bring revelation of the knowledge of Him. As this occurs, Satan will inevitably sow among us “tares.” These are people who try to appear to be believers but in fact are not. Over time it’s impossible for many of these counterfeit believers to hide who they really are. But we must let this process play out without our interference for two very important reasons. First, if we deal graciously with all people, some of these counterfeit Christians will become sincere followers of Christ. Authentic believers who live a genuinely Spirit-filled life of faith may influence them. The contrast between the life of the Spirit and the life of the flesh can often cause hypocrites to repent of their life of self-deception. Secondly, this careful approach protects new believers who are babes in Christ. In certain areas of life, these immature believers may appear to be nonbelievers. If we judge them as “tares,” they can become overwhelmed with discouragement. They may conclude that their baby steps are not enough for them to belong to the family of God.

Therefore, let us not pretend to be God. We’re not Him! Only God knows the true heart condition of each of us. God will in His own time separate the wheat and the tares, at the Second Coming of Christ.

I Don’t Love Your Smacking, But I Love You

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Would it be ok if we all just set our gavels down and decided to love people for who they are? Would it be ok if we quit demanding perfection in others? Would it be ok if we shifted our vision..from seeing faults in others to instead seeing the potential in others?

The truth us, we are all imperfect. So let’s just decide right now to quit pretending we are perfect. We aren’t, we never will be. And that’s ok!

Jesus loves me in spite of my shortcomings so I’m going to love myself, and you, too!

Have a beautiful day!

Blessings,

Sarah

**As I was typing this, my amazingly wonderful husband, was sitting next to me, talking with his mouth full. Satan is using that to see if I really mean what I’m saying in this post. Well let’s just say..life is a growing opportunity. And I’m growing.

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Today’s devo selection:

How many white hairs have you been given?
by George Whitten

Matthew 7:2-5 For with what judgment you judge, you shall be judged: and with what measure you use, it shall be measured back to you. And why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, Let me pull out the speck out of your eye; and, look, a plank is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first remove the plank out of your own eye; and then you will see clearly to remove the speck out of thy brother’s eye.

A dear friend recently sent us this funny story and we couldn’t help but share it with you.

One day a little girl was sitting and watching her mother do the dishes at the kitchen sink. She suddenly noticed that her mother had several strands of white hair sticking out in contrast upon her brunette head. She looked at her mother and inquisitively asked, “Mom, why are some of your hairs white?”

“Well”, her mother replied, “every time that you do something wrong and make me cry or unhappy, one of my hairs turns white.”

The little girl thought about this revelation for a while and then said, “Momma, how come all of Grandma’s hairs are white?”

A funny story, yes — but isn’t it true that we’re always looking for someone to blame for our imperfections? The Lord warned us about the danger of pointing out the faults of others. He said that people with planks in their eyes should not attempt to remove specks out of other people’s eyes. Somehow, we lose sight of this so quickly! We are all still growing. None of us has arrived! We need to be aware of how the enemy tries to ensnare us in this way.

I don’t know about you but I tend to agree with the person who said “The only person I want removing splinters out of my eyes is someone with a clear vision and a gentle touch!”

Let’s ask the Lord to help us to see the ways we’ve been judgmental and become people with clear vision and a gentle touch! We should be building up one another and encouraging each other so that the work of the Lord may go forward and we may rejoice together in the blessing!

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