Spiritual Door Frames
“God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as He did to us. He made no distinction between us and them, for he purified their hearts by faith. Now then, why do you try to test God by putting on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear?” Acts 15:8-9
When my children were young, we would take height measurements with little marks on the door frame like most of you, I am sure. It always made me laugh inside how the tallest child looked at the others as if they were second class citizens… as if they had accomplished something within themselves. Whoever the tallest was at the moment would look to me as if they had won and I surely must love them the most. Truth is, my love and approval had absolutely nothing to do with their height accomplishment because they had nothing to do with it themselves.
The same is true with the manner in which God views His children. It seems odd to me that as we are building our faith, we tend to measure the faith of others. As we expand our relationship with God, we determine the lack of relationship in Christian acquaintances and even friends. In our hearts, we mark our spiritual door frames where we stand taller than the others. We have a sense of pride that our faith is greater… our relationship with God is more solid… our walk is deeper. This is an easy trap in which to fall and all of us should be cautious. We place unrealistic expectations on friends and family when we can’t even live up to them ourselves. We judge the faith of this woman, that man, what she failed to do, what appalling thing he did.
The truth of the matter is that everyone who has the Holy Spirit inside stands on equal ground before God. Our passage states that when we measure our faith against the faith of another, we are not testing ourselves against man, but rather against God. The Bible is clear…God does not have favorites. ‘I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism but accepts men from every nation who fear him…’ Acts 10:34-35. The Bible goes on to explain that if we show favoritism, a display of partiality toward a favored person or group, we sin against the law of God. ‘Love your neighbor as yourself…But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers.’ James 2:8-9.
Our spiritual door frames should be marked with one line besides our own mark… the measurement of Christ. We should measure all of our actions and spiritual growth as it relates to whom we are striving to be instead of whom we think we have become as it relates to others.
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