A pastor once thought that it was his responsibility to change the world. For years he struggled and worked. He finally became so discouraged that he wanted to quit.
In a moment of insight, he decided to utilize a new strategy. “I’ll change the attitude of my Elders. That’s the place for me to begin.” But he soon realized that this was not going to happen. Their resistance was fierce and he soon gave up.
“Since they didn’t respond,” he said to himself, “I’ll change my family.” That didn’t work either. Each evening when he laid out their tasks for the next day they looked at him with blank stares.
Finally he identified the problem: “I must change and improve myself first and the others will follow.”
David got it right! He said, “Search me, O God, and know my heart. Test me and know my thoughts.”
It is much easier to look at the lives of others and see things that we think they need to change. It is much easier to want to change them than to want to change ourselves. But seeing what needs to be changed in others and wanting to change them is not the way God works. He wants us to begin with ourselves - to see the sin that is in our lives - the sin that He sees. And when He removes the sin and shortcomings from our lives we become like Him, and then become an example for others to follow.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, help us not to be concerned about what others need to change in their lives, but what we need to change in our lives to be more like You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture for Today: Psalm 139:23-24 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.