Tuesday, June 5, 2012

How human we all are



It seems the closer I grow to God, the more I am reminded of just how frail and weak this human flesh really is. With Saint Paul I cry out, I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree that the law is good. So then it is no longer I that do it, but sin which dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. (Romans 7:15-19).  While my mind knows exactly what God requires of me and my heart knows what is right and good, getting the flesh to listen to my 'will' doesn't seem to always line up.

A few weeks ago we were attending an event which had a great deal of people in it. As people were walking in, we watched from the very top of the stands. At some point one of the kids went out and bought water bottles for all of us, and we sat talking, laughing, and sipping our drinks. The stands began to fill up and before long a group of individuals walked up and sat directly in front of us.

As they walked up the flesh began to think things that were not nice. I thought things like wow, they are going to be loud. They are going to be saying things my kids don't want to hear. Here I was, a man trying to live for God, and instantly I judged these people on their appearance alone. I didn't know where they were from, who they were, or even consider that I was dressed much like the fellows there and yet, my flesh wanted to judge them. My spirit rebuked me and I sat in silence, wondering if I would ever get such thoughts under control.

As the evening progressed, our youngest dropped her water bottle. She began to cry because it had fallen a long way to the ground and there was no way she could go right now and retrieve it. Without hesitating, the young woman in front of me placed her hand into her purse and pulled out a pack of gum, and handed one to my daughter. The simple act of kindness reminded me just how wrong I was to judge her, for while I was being judgmental out of instinct, she whom I judged turned and showed pure love and affection for those around her.

Ah that one day I can be as filled with love as this woman, and have the pure unconditional love to turn to a complete stranger and comfort them. Lord help me to become more like You, and less like myself.

His servant and yours,
Brian