Friday, June 19, 2020

What a True Christian Looks Like

By: Sarah Geringer 

Who may worship in your sanctuary, Lord?
    Who may enter your presence on your holy hill?
Those who lead blameless lives and do what is right,
    speaking the truth from sincere hearts.
Those who refuse to gossip
    or harm their neighbors
    or speak evil of their friends.
Those who despise flagrant sinners,
    and honor the faithful followers of the Lord,
    and keep their promises even when it hurts.
Those who lend money without charging interest,
    and who cannot be bribed to lie about the innocent.
Such people will stand firm forever.

Psalm 15:1-5 NLT

David is painting a picture of a true God-follower in this psalm. It's a list of sorts for the heart God seeks in his followers.

Here's the list:
-Lead a blameless life
-Do what is right
-Speak the truth
-Sincere heart
-Refuse to gossip
-Do no harm to neighbors
-Do not speak evil about friends
-Despise flagrant sinners
-Honor faithful followers of the Lord
-Keep promises even when it hurts
-Lend money without charging interest
-Cannot be bribed to lie about the innocent

How do you feel when your read over that list?

At first glance, I feel somewhat discouraged. I've only been up for an hour, and I think I've failed in at least one of those areas already.

However, I don't think this is a prohibitive list. I don't think David was saying someone should be stationed at the sanctuary door to screen entrants with this list.

I think he was setting up an ideal, a high standard for us to aim toward. You probably have mental lists for your perfect day. You may have a list like this one:

-Eat 9 servings of fruits and vegetables every day
-Get 8 hours of sleep
-Brush your teeth twice a day
-Floss once per day
-Drink 64 oz. of water.

But if you don't meet every goal, are you a failure? No, because you are striving toward better health.

Has God allowed me to worship in his sanctuary after gossiping about others? While leading a not-so-blameless life? When I wasn't keeping my promises? Yes.

The truth is, when I kept going to church and worshiping God despite my failure to meet God's perfect laws, it actually made we want to please him more. To strive harder to live a godly life, because I love him and want to honor him, not because I want to earn points on a checklist.

God developed a heart of worship in me. A desire to worship out of love and devotion. David says, "Such people will stand firm forever."

Questions for you:

How do feel when you first hear the word worship? Does it feel more like a checklist item, or like a love-based experience?

Have you experienced an attitude shift toward worship? What did it look like?

What item on David's checklist speaks most to you? What can you do to strive for a higher standard in that area?

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Have a wonderful weekend!

Blessings and God's peace to you,

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