Up to half of my kingdom for a cup of coffee.
Now that I've got that out of the way...
Can I be honest here? Can I just say it and be exposed? I will. There is this really dangerous line in doing righteous acts. There is this fuzzy, squirmy line that slips under your feet while you're not looking. That when we do something good and worthy, suddenly we find ourselves in a place of our own honoring, looking smartly at our reflections, clicking and pointing our gun-fingers at ourselves with an attaboy and a wink. And we look at others differently.
The scribes and the pharisees had good intentions. Their desire was to follow the law and honor the commandments. But somewhere along the way, some of them allowed this line to make it's way under their lifted feet like a jump rope. And when they came face to face with the promised seed of Abraham, some of them were too busy patting themselves on the back and ignoring the masses to realize Jesus was who he claimed to be. And boy did they get an earful from the chosen one.
There have been a couple of moments for me, during this Pick Five season, where I have thought too highly of myself. Where I thought, Gee, Me, you're pretty impressive. Very quickly I realized my error and repented. But then there's the second part. Others.
We live in a world and in a society of all kinds of people, all kinds of socioeconomic standard, and all kinds of personal convictions. My conviction to live simpler and appreciate more is not for everyone. It happens to fit well for me, since I have little choice in the matter anyway. :) But doing Pick Five and learning to live without and appreciate and help out in no way allows me to look down my nose and click my silent tongue at those whose convictions are different. It is not fair to judge someone in my heart who seems to spend money on useless things, or waste time on fruitless efforts, just because I think I know how better to steward their income or time. Who am I? Nobody.
But that line, that tricky tricky line. It's the same one that we slide across when we have a good stint of exercise. And by that I mean like three or four gym visits within a two week period, when we're suddenly "in shape" and healthy and Goodness Gracious, you're not really going to eat that cheeseburger, are you? God, I couldn't do that after that really hard cardio kickboxing class I took today. The line. Or when we're in the grocery store, and for some miracle from heaven our children are behaving themselves and following closely and not fighting or taking things off the shelves. And we hear the shout from two aisles down. Mommy, I want it! No, don't take it! It's mine! IT'S MINE!!! Our children's halos appear and we smirk and puff up our chest at every passerby, because Look at me. I'm the good mom. The line.
So, forgive me friends. Once again. Because even though I can put on the righteous front, inside I am filled with dead men's bones and everything unclean. And God sees the me that I cover up, and God sees the me that I don't even know I'm covering up.
But I thank Him for that. It is such a relief that someone knows me, knows every secret I keep, knows the things that would mortify if released. And that He still loves me, and is ever waiting for me to return to Him, and wants to do the things through me that I so desperately try to do on my own.
I cannot love if I have put a wedge between me and others, even the lowest of the low of society. Because we are all the same. Broken. And I think I just got my reminder.