Searching For Relevance

What Will You Do?

March 23, 2017

I recently read the results of a survey that concluded most people believe they are basically . . . essentially . . . almost certainly . . . “honest”.   And yet, the survey also revealed that 70% of this same group would act . . . do . . . or take advantage of a questionable situation if it didn’t seem to “directly hurt” somebody AND no one was watching!!!!

Interesting, isn’t it?  That is, the expectations of accountability we place upon ourselves versus the application of the supposed same criteria when placed upon others!  Likewise, the person we are when others aren’t watching, versus who we really are when truly alone.  Jesus once addressed this by saying, “Why do you point out the sliver in someone else’s eye while ignoring, denying, excusing, justifying the log in your own eye?”

I always smile when public figures are caught making poor, unethical, perhaps immoral, or even illegal acts and then stand before their constituency and profess their sorrow and regret while asking for forgiveness.  And I think:  Are you really sorry for what you did, or sorry because you got caught?  

The 40 Days of Lent is a time for asking such questions of ourselves.  Creating a journey that includes time for introspection that asks the hard questions about what may be inhibiting the growth of both our character and faith.  

     What are the “games” we play in order to believe we act better than we do?  

     Do we really live by the same standards we judge other?

     Do we make excuses that justify not being as generous or compassionate or merciful or accepting as we       like others to think?  

     Are we the kind of folk who live by the rule, “Do what I say, NOT what I do?”

     Or . . . do we allow the grace we expect from God to flow our way to also flow in the direction of others?

This is a challenge for each of us, especially during this season of Lent as we hear stories of disciples who tell Jesus, “Others will run away, but not me!”  Then run away anyway.

Think about it!  Now!  Lent . . . is the time!

Rev. Keith A. Haemmelmann