Do not let those who are wrongfully my enemies rejoice over me; nor let those who hate me without cause wink maliciously. For they do not speak peace, but they devise deceitful words against those who are quiet in the land. – Psalms 35:19-20
Even though we may be Christ-followers (and, therefore, possess the mind of Christ), we’re not always right in our attitudes or actions. Of course, I’m sure you already knew that. Navigating our walk as believers can get tricky.
For example, passion for “the mission” may occasionally blind us to the needs of others. At other times, we may act out of self-preservation and shrink back from personal responsibility. There are even instances when we may act righteously and responsibly with a firm stance in God’s truth, only to be unjustly attacked by others who also claim to follow Christ. When this happens, we may seek vindication or retribution against those who have sought our harm. While all these situations may give us cause for bad behavior, they will not stand as excuses before the Lord. If we want to be more like Christ, then we must be willing to acknowledge our own failings and seek change.
Christ has established an impossible standard for our own righteousness, but thankfully He also took our place and met it. Now, by the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit, we let Him live that righteous life through us.
Affliction shows the power of Christ’s blood, when it gives peace in an hour of trouble, when it can make happy in sickness, poverty, persecution and death. Do not be surprised if you suffer, but glorify God. – Robert Murray McCheyne
Dr. David Pope is President and Founder of POPE Initiatives, a non-profit organization committed to providing executive-level management and support services for major global mission efforts.
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