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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...


 

Daily Boost

March 7, 2013 - Post-in-Eye Syndrome

By Jerry D. Scott

"How about that post in your own eye?" was Jesus' gently humorous jab at those who were quick to point out the speck of sawdust in someone else's eye, an object lesson on the size of the sins we're so quick to identify in other people while ignoring our own.

It reminds me of the guy who complained to the police about teenagers speeding through his neighborhood. After being ticketed himself, he showed up at the city council meeting three weeks later to protest the "speed trap" on his street.

Yes, I'll confess I have been guilty of wanting others to keep the rules while seeking a pass for myself! I call this disorder PIES, or "Post-in-Eye Syndrome." The Old Testament includes one of the most glaring examples in all of Scripture. You can read about it in 2 Samuel 11 and 12.

After King David reached Israel's throne and won a settled peace throughout his kingdom, he sent his generals off to war while he stayed at the palace. "It's good to be king," he thought.

While enjoying the cool breeze on the palace roof one evening, David happened to notice Bathsheba, a beautiful woman bathing next door. Somehow I think David knew he was moving in the wrong direction, but he gave himself a pass from the rules that governed "ordinary mortals." He was the king, after all.

David learned Bathsheba was the wife of Uriah, one of his trusted soldiers, but ignored that inconvenient fact. When Bathsheba became pregnant by David, he plotted murder via proxy. With Uriah dead, David discreetly (don't you love that word?) brought Bathsheba into his palace and married her. For one full year, he thought no one had noticed, not even the Lord.

Then Nathan the prophet visited the king with a story about a poor farmer whose one lone lamb, a pet no less, was stolen by his rich neighbor and served to dinner guests! David's sense of justice kicked into overdrive, and he delivered a thundering edict — the wicked neighbor deserved to die. "You're that man!" said Nathan.

Here's what Jesus said. "Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged. And why worry about a speck in your friend's eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, 'Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,' when you can't see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend's eye" (Matthew 7:1-5, NLT).

Jesus is not teaching us to just tolerate everything and avoid hard truth. Too often we think it's loving to say, "I'm a sinner; you're a sinner; we're all sinners together!" Nor is the lesson one of living at the lowest common denominator. We really are our brother's keeper. "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another" (Proverbs 27:17, NIV).

Within the Body of Christ, we must keep spurring each other on, raising the level of excellence, pursuing holiness wholeheartedly. But we can never be of any help to a brother or sister while we are in the grip of PIES.

Are you spending a lot of time tending to the business of others, monitoring the morality of the church, pointing out flaws and failures? The only cure to post-in-eye syndrome is face time with the Great Physician who says, "I counsel you to buy from me ... salve to put on your eyes, so you can see." (Revelation 3:18).

When David faced Nathan's exposure of his sin, he was healed of PIES and below is his prayer. May it be ours as well.

"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. ?Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. ?Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. ?Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will turn back to you." ?(Psalm 51:10-13).

— Jerry D. Scott is senior pastor at Faith Discovery Church (Assemblies of God) in Washington, N.J.

 

 

 

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