Don’t Play the Hypocrite

“Baseball is like a poker game. Nobody wants to quit when he’s losing; nobody wants you to quit when you’re ahead.”~~Jackie Robinson
(BrainyQuote)

Today’s word of the day, from Dictionary.com, is intransigent, which means, “refusing to agree or compromise; uncompromising; inflexible.”

Today is Eiffel Tower Day, marking the date of the completion of the Eiffel Tower in 1889. Just a few years later, the creators of the Chicago World’s Fair would rack their brains, trying to come up with something to “out-Eiffel Mr. Eiffel. The result was the world’s first Ferris Wheel.

It’s Thursday, which means one more day until the weekend. And four more days until Opening Day! It’s hard to tell how the teams are shaping up, as I have never been one to pay a lot of attention to Spring Training. A lot of people get caught up in it, but the win-loss record in Spring Training really says nothing. It’s just what it says . . . “training.” It’s time to experiment with new players while getting the veteran players limbered up and ready to play a long, 162-game season. That’s a lot of games. But it all starts Monday.

Rachel and Justin might be coming over on Saturday so we can take them out to celebrate Rachel’s birthday, which was Tuesday. Other than that, I can’t think of much. Oh, I guess I’m playing keys again Sunday at church.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

(From Praying With the Psalms)

Blessed is the one who considers the poor! In the day of trouble the LORD delivers him;
Psa 41:2 the LORD protects him and keeps him alive; he is called blessed in the land; you do not give him up to the will of his enemies.
Psa 41:3 The LORD sustains him on his sickbed; in his illness you restore him to full health.

Psalm 41:1-3

The scriptures are very compassionate concerning the poor, who are typically ignored by some, and, even worse, treated with contempt by others. Or maybe that’s not worse. Maybe being totally ignored is worse. But we, as God’s people, are taught “that the way we treat the poor measures the quality of our love for God.” We are called to remember the words of Jesus in Matthew 25:40. Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.

“‘Daily our lives would show weakness made strong, toilsome and gloomy ways brightened with song; some deeds of kindness done, some souls by patience won, dear Lord, to Thee, dear Lord, to Thee’ (Edwin P. Parker, ‘Master, No Offering’). Amen.”

(From My Utmost For His Highest)

Today’s reading is “Heedfulness vs. Hypocrisy in Ourselves.”

If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask, and God will give him life—to those who commit sins that do not lead to death.
1 John 5:16

We need to careful to heed the way the Spirit of God works within us. “We see where other folks are failing, and we turn our discernment into the gibe of criticism instead of into intercession on their behalf.” “The gibe of criticism” can also become what we know as “gossip.” We must also be sure that we are correctly worshiping God so that we don’t “play the hypocrite” by spending all of our time trying to “get others right.”

When the Lord reveals something to us through our discernment, the idea is that we immediately take it back to him “and form the mind of Christ about them.” Then we can truly intercede for them. As mentioned in yesterday’s reading, we need to “rouse ourselves until God is able to convey His mind to us about the one for whom we intercede.” We need to be so identified with Christ that we know his mind concerning those for whom we are praying.

Father, I continue to pray for this ability to know your mind about the people for whom I am praying, some on a daily basis. I confess that I am guilty of turning discernment into “the gibe of criticism,” and pray that I would, rather, worship you until the mind of Christ is formed within me. I pray the prayer of Moses: “Now therefore, if I have found favor in your sight, please show me now your ways, that I may know you in order to find favor in your sight.” (Exodus 33:13)

Come, Lord Jesus!

Grace and peace, friends.

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