Thursday, October 13, 2011

Deficit Reduction

2 Corinthians 5:16-21; Colossians 3:11-15

With all the talk about the deficit and national debt, we realize that as believers we have a balance sheet as well. We have both a great debt and a large surplus. We have a surplus of selfishness and wanting my way right now. We have a great deficit of obedience and love for Christ

What does your balance sheet look like? Perhaps it is time for an audit of your spiritual books. Those treasures you are laying up – where are they (Matthew 6:19-21, 33). In the economy of the Savior, less is more. Less of me makes room for more of Him.

The more I see and understand my own sins (even the ‘little’ ones) are personal insults and acts of rebellion against a thrice holy God and  how I am prone to wander, rather, hurry into sin, selfishness, and self-centeredness,
The more I see the unspeakable, immeasurable depth of His forgiveness, a gift I could never earn.
The more I see myself as God sees me,
The less satisfied I am with myself as I am and the more I want of Christ.
The more I seek Christ,
The less I am that pitiful, sinful person I was before my Jesus-rescue and the more I trust Him, His ways, and His truth.
The more time I spend in the delight of His Word, His Presence, His counsel, His ways,
The less time I have to chase around like a child the glistening soap bubbles that are empty, without substance, and distract from what is really important.
The more time I take to pray for those important to me, for those in need, the more I learn how to pray,
The more I become sensitive to God’s promptings, to His still, small voice and the less time I have for self.
The more I see the love that held Jesus to the cross for me,
The more I am ashamed at how little I love Him and sacrifice for Him.
The more I get assaulted, pushed down, and tossed around by the cares in this world,
The more I long to spend time alone with my Savior and only Hope.
The more I set my heart on things that count for eternity (people, the Word, the Lord’s work, worship),
The less patience (and greater pity) I have with those who focus on the temporal and scorn the eternal (2 Cor. 4:18).

Prayer: Bankrupt me, O Christ, of my self-sufficiency, my disobedience. Invest me with the revenues of a growing love for You. Set my mind on things above, not on earthly things.

[1] Adapted from Charley Gunter, “The More,” found in Sylvia Gunter, Prayer Essentials for Living in His Presence (Birmingham, AL: The Father’s Business, 2000), 2:29.