March 14, 2011

The Perfect Christian...is not me....

So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter in law, with her, which returned out of the country of Moab and they came to Bethlehem . . .
Ruth: 1:22

Often, when you and I backslide, the tragedy is that we take others with us.

“I’m going fishing,” Peter said. “I’m not good enough. I’m not worthy
enough to follow Jesus Christ any longer” (see John 21:3).

What did the other disciples say?

“We’ll go with you,” they said, as they boarded the boat of backsliding
together.

But here is Naomi coming back, returning to the place of blessing, and look,
she is bringing Ruth with her - Ruth who will be so instrumental in the very
genealogy of Jesus Christ; Ruth, who is herself an illustration of the Body of
Christ. Ruth is brought into the Land of Promise by a broken
Naomi.

When was Ruth brought into the place of blessing? It wasn’t when
she was
impressed with Naomi’s pleasantness and perfectness. It was when she saw
Naomi’s brokenness and bitterness.

Precious people, I am convinced that very often our friends, family,
colleagues,and neighbors are not getting saved and not responding to
the Gospel because they look at us and see the life we are presenting to
 them as being totally together,and they say, “God is the God of the
together person, the perfect person - which is fine for you because
you’re together and you’re perfect.
But I’m not. Therefore He could not be my God.”

Why is it we try so hard to present ourselves as perfect? We know we’re
not. Who are we kidding? We all know we have problems and weaknesses,
temptations and difficulties. And yet we carefully cultivate an impeccable
image to present to the world. I suggest to you that people are touched
and moved not when you and I preach from the pulpit of perfection, but
rather when we share from the place of brokenness and humility - not
pointing to our togetherness, but to God’s graciousness.

Marrying into Naomi’s happy Hebrew family did not convert Ruth.
You see, it was not until Naomi - Miss Pleasant - became humble
and confessed freely that the Lord had dealt bitterly with her that
Ruth said, “Your God shall be my God because I can relate
to a God like that.”
This Daily Devotional is an excerpt from the book
 "Footsteps of the Flock"
by Pastor Jon."Footsteps of the Flock" is a collection
 of 365 short devotions from the Old Testament books
 of Joshua through Malachi. 

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