Christmas Article: Mercy For Christmas

Sandy was cooking supper and her sister Betty offered to help. When Betty drained the spaghetti, she dropped it into the sink because the size of the pan made it awkward to hold. Later that week, Sandy and I were at Thanksgiving dinner with some friends. When Sandy told our friends the story, she did not say that Betty dropped the spaghetti. Sandy said "we" dropped the spaghetti. Sandy did not lift herself above making mistakes. And she did not point a finger of blame.

When we see someone who we think is unsaved, we must not lift ourselves above making mistakes. We must not point a finger of blame. We should not judge a church visitor and say that he is not really a Christian when he confesses a life of sin. We cannot assume that he is not strong enough to follow the Lord. We can't see the whole picture. Perhaps the visitor has shown more strength and courage in a few minutes simply by walking into our church building than we have shown in our lives in the past few months. The visitor is listening to and responding to God's voice. Are you?

There is an old saying about a person not having enough sense to come in out of the rain. We may think we know more about God than a person coming out of the world to check out our church. But a visitor obviously has some sense and must be teachable, because he did have enough sense to come into our church, and out of the rain of this world's turmoil. So, be careful. That supposedly unsaved person may have picked up enough tidbits of wisdom along the way to teach us a thing or two. And he may not be as unsaved as we think.

If someone would rather talk about his life in the world than hear us talk about God, we should still listen with love and understanding. We must respect his feelings. But remember. We are not saved by our feelings. We are saved by our knowledge of who Christ is and what He has done for us. We are saved by Christ's blood. Our salvation is evidenced by our commitment to God, not our feelings.

Go to God in prayer and petition for mercy. Ask God to lift both yourself and the unsaved people around you out of sin. Place yourself directly beside those to whom you witness, in your prayer life and in your personal life. Do this, and you will be a blessing to all those around you.

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