Wednesday, May 18, 2016

SPIRITUAL CHECKUP

The wonderful thing about God’s schoolroom is that we get to grade our own papers.  You see, He doesn’t test us so He can learn how well we’re doing.  He tests us so we can discover how well we’re doing.
Charles Swindoll

~*~


This statement is simple enough - but only works if you are completely non-prejudiced about yourself.  And who can do that, really?

On the other hand, you must try, and you must be a close to a non-prejudiced opinion about the things you live and do in your own lives. That is why God gave man free will. Maybe He regrets it, we'll never know, but it was given for a reason, obviously.

Stand in front of the mirror every evening before you pray and go to sleep. Look into your own eyes and ask yourself, "was I generous, kind, helpful, prayerful," and so many other things "today?"  We have our own litmus test and it is contained throughout our Holy Bible.  Especially in the Gospels, Jesus lays it all out quite clearly. God had plans; beautiful, big ones, for this world in which we live. He did not give up on the first run. No, he flooded it and all but Noah and his family and 2 of each species of animals perished. Then the floods went away and land was seen once again.

Is the third time a charmer? Uh, doesn't appear to be that way and the time for judgment is not terribly far away. I ask myself almost daily "am I worthy?" My answer to myself is honest: You have to live each day according to the will of God in order to be worthy. So, it never stops, you never stop and you teach your children to love God and Jesus and to live their lives in the same way as you are living yours.

The best lessons are taught by example. If families gather around the dinner table each night, pray and share food and conversation, I can guarantee you that you are going to see a huge difference that that family when compared to the one where the kids eat in their rooms or everyone in front of a television, or the kids are too involved in their video games to stop. About that, I believe in this day and age that parents have gone WAY overboard on purchasing electronics to keep the minds of their children busy.  When we have family dinner for everyone, it's usually every other weekend, I can guarantee you that I've changed so much that when I walk into the living room after dinner, my grandchildren, step-children, children - they are all looking down at their iPhones! It is really annoying, but I don't say anything. I did sneak a photo (which I won't publish) after dinner one evening, but you cannot even shame them into putting down their phones and interacting with dear ole Mom and Dad.

But, I've digressed - pardon. The end is coming, and in my most humble opinion, I believe it could even be in my lifetime, or at the latest, in children's lifetimes. I want all of my loved ones in heaven; I want to be in heaven for all eternity. But I don't take it for granted. People say, "of course you'll be in heaven, Abbey!", but NEVER, EVER take your salvation for granted. For once you do, you let your guard down and that leaves a huge opening for satan's angels to begin slowly taking over all that you've believed in and lived for years. You risk the total destruction of your personal salvation.

I am not willing to risk it. Additionally, I have no greater respect for anyone, heaven or earth, than I do our Lord Jesus!  When I told my therapist how often I say "I'm sorry, please forgive me" for certain sins over my lifetime, I was surprised when she said "why?"  Well, firstly, because I do NOT take my salvation for granted. And I know the Bible says we only need absolution once, but as I told her, "after all He went through FOR ME, nothing I have been through or ever will go through compares on any level, I don't care what level it is!" (Maybe she doesn't realize I'm Catholic? <smile>)

Remember, keep tabs on yourself and those whom you love. Look in that mirror every evening and as yourself how well you did as a Christian that day. Then you can go into prayer knowing your own faults, and they are only between you and Jesus, so you can apologize to Him and nobody is going to judge you! You may even get a second chance to redeem yourself!


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Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you--unless indeed you fail the test?

Lovingly in Jesus Christ,
ABBEY



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