Fixers

SEPTEMBER 15

MATTHEW 7:4_Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, let me pull out the mote out of thine eye…

We all lean toward being fixers. At times, that comes from a pure heart. We really just want to stop the pain of someone we love. It is much easier to bear our own hurt than to see someone we love hurting. If we can find any way at all, we’re going to put a stop to that pain.

When motivated by genuine love we’ll give our money, our possessions, our time, and our whole heart, because we love someone else more than ourselves. In general, that is not a bad thing.

There are ways in which being a fixer can cause more harm than good. God has a pure heart. He never wants to see His loved ones hurting. He wants us free from hurt, but also free from causing hurt.

Trials and suffering are a part of the path we must follow as disciples. When we see our loved ones going through a God-ordained trial (suffering for righteousness sake), or a self-ordained trial (making poor decisions) we may want to ease their pain. It is best to comfort those we love through their trials. If we interfere and fix the problem, they may never develop the character needed to fully achieve God’s purpose for their life.

God can use either type of trial, His ordained trial or our self-made trial, for our good.

His is much easier!

PRAYER

Loving Jesus, Help me know when to fix a problem, and when to wait. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                                   

Christ can use all kinds of problems—for my good!

A Mote, Not a Beam

SEPTEMBER 14

MATTHEW 7:3_And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

If your heart dwells on the truth of God’s love and mercy, you will understand you were saved while you were a sinner. That can be a beam – if you do not understand you are as guilty a sinner as anyone on the face of the earth. The only reason you find any freedom is because Christ paid your debt – with His life. 

As you grow in faith, begin to dwell on who you are in Jesus. It truly is amazing!

John 8:32 (KJV) “And ye shall know the truth [Jesus], and the truth shall make you free.”

Romans 8:37 (KJV) “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him [Jesus] that loved us.”

Philippians 4:13 (KJV) “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”

Mark 11:23 (KJV) “For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.”

Matthew 19:26 (KJV) “But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, ‘With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.’”

To hold someone accountable does not mean you stand in judgment of them—it means you love them.

To judge someone as unworthy of mercy is to see a mote, not a beam.

PRAYER

God of the Impossible, I want Your kind of mercy—that loves and saves. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.   

Christ’s love can save me—from anything!

A Changed Man

SEPTEMBER 13

MATTHEW 7:3_And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

Had the wicked servant dwelt on the unbelievable mercy rendered to him by the king, he would have bestowed mercy on his fellow-servant. However, non-believers can’t be expected to respond to life as believers. That’s why there is such a need for salty-lit-up disciples. Lifestyles that shine in such a way to draw captives to freedom, like a lighthouse to a ship lost in a raging storm. Light sends a ray of hope. Once the ship makes it to the safety of the harbor, it is time to preserve it with the salt of mercy – mercy that flows from unconditional love.

In the case of the apostle Paul the light shone on him, blinded him. When he was healed and his sight restored three days later, he was a changed man. The light blinded him to the hate that his hard heart had toward Jesus’ followers. It also blinded him to the lies (that Jesus was demonic and his followers would be the destruction of the Jewish religion) with which the devil deceived him.

The light set Paul free to become the Jesus follower who wrote a large portion of the New Testament. 

He was salty and lit-up!

PRAYER

Heavenly Father, I want Your kind of light—that blinds, but heals. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.   

Christ’s light can blind me—It can also heal me!

Not Easy, But Better Than Bondage

SEPTEMBER 12

MATTHEW 7:3_And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

The kind of judgment found in the wicked servant’s heart is to believe a debt, or any wrong, is never worthy of mercy. To the judgmental, guilt should only result in punishment – never mercy.

Once again, there are situations when the best thing to do for guilty people is to turn them over to the law. There are times when people are so deeply in bondage that it requires a rude awakening to save them.

This happened to the apostle Paul on the road to Damascus: Acts 9 (KJV), “And he [Paul] fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, ‘Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?’ And he said, ‘Who art thou, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.’ And he [Paul] trembling and astonished said, ‘Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?’ And the Lord said unto him, ‘Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.’And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened, he saw no man: but they led him by the hand, and brought him into Damascus.And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.”

This is not an easy way to be set free, but it is better than bondage.

PRAYER

Lord of Lords, Praise You that You are able to free me from bondages. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                   

 Christ gives mercy—He helps me discern when to give it!

Poor Judgment

SEPTEMBER 8

MATTHEW 7:2_and with what measure ye mete…

Poor judgment makes no allowance for mistakes of others. When punishment has been received for mistakes, and grief expressed, yet all doors are closed to the offenders, watch out for poor judgment.     

This type of judgment causes great damage to offenders. They are bound to the bondage of worthlessness and lack of self-esteem, because that is exactly how they are judged. Bondages are always from the devil. Freedom is always from God.

The devil carefully works his plan making sure both the offenders and the ones who permanently judge, are in bondage. The offenders are constantly bombarded with the devil’s whispers, “You can’t do anything right. You’ll never be any good. You’re just a bad person. No one will ever give you an opportunity because everyone knows all about you. There is no need to try. Even if you do something right, they’ll say it is wrong—just because you did it!”

The ones passing judgment are also bombarded with the devil’s accusations against the offenders, “Just because they’ve been punished doesn’t mean they should have another chance. They messed things up before and will again. It’s best to keep them at a distance. They have lost the privilege of being trusted.” 

PRAYER

God of Mercy,  You have forgiven and helped me, let me do the same for others. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                    

Christ knows how to love everyone—He will help me!