Thursday, July 31, 2008

Removing A Speck

Luke 6 tells us as Christians that we should not be hypocritical in our admonition of man but to make sure that we can see and remove the speck from our own eyes. This is very difficult to do but if we are truly followers of Christ then we must obey this commandment He gave to us. When we pray to Christ to make us into Christian examples we often don't remember that there are things that we must do in order to be such and many of those things seem difficult if we continue to think that our flesh is more important than that of our Savior. I had an incident happen in my life last night that I know was God giving me an opportunity to be a Christian without being a hypocrite in my own life.
School is soon to start back and having two young sons I worry about throwing them into that environment where the filters we have at home are removed. Ethan will be going to 2nd grade and Luke will be starting kindergarten. The night before Ethan's first night of kindergarten I sat down with him, just the two of us, and had a very meaningful conversation with him regarding what it meant to be a leader and not following the crowd. I will not go into the details at this time but I intend to have the same conversation with Luke on the eve of his schooling.
I can think back and remember that a funny thing happened to me the day that Ethan started school. I remember that I went to the driving range that day during my lunch to relieve some tension as I was worried about Ethan and how he was doing. While there, I was approached by a young lady who was the girlfriend of a boy I had grown up with and who I knew had been in and out of rehab and jail for drug related charges. As the two of us began to have a conversation I came to find out that the boy, now a man, was in the local jail awaiting to be sent to a more secure and structured facility. As I was talking to this girl God placed it on my heart that I needed to go to the local jail and apologize to this young man for not being a better example for him as we grew up and to let him know that I was there for him and could relate to what he is going through. I actually talked with my wife about this and made plans to go. Plans that I never followed through with before hearing that he had been moved to another location. A wasted opportnity to do what I had talked to my son about the night before. I was no leader and asking my son to do so was beyond hypocritical of me.
Needless to say this grieved my heart and I have spoken to the young man's grandmother about this and requested that she keep me informed of this young man's status. As I have given thought to what I will tell my yopungest son about being a leader before he starts kindergarten I have been reminded of the incident described above several times and it has continued to weigh on me. Strangely, last night I spoke with the young man's grandmother and she told me that he was out of jail and soon to have a child. I asked her for his phone number and called and left a message. To my suprise, he soon called back. God presented me with not only an opportunity to say what He had put on my heart two years ago, but also to be able to minister to this young man for a short time. Also, and to my benefit, I was allowed to remove a plank from my eye so I can openly and honestly discuss leadership with my youngest son now with no remorse. When I finished this conversation and hung the phone I was literally on cloud nine. I felt wonderful despite the fact that it was ten at night. Thank the Almighty God for his presence in my life.
If there are people in your lives that you feel you need to make things right with, let me say it is great. I felt like a million bucks last night and all I did was what I should have done two years ago. If you have planks you need to remove so that you can be a minister of truth to your family, friends, or others that God sends to you, remove them. It may seem hard to think about but it really is not. Christ died for you so that you can have these opportunities.

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