“Goodie-two-shoes.” “Perfect little angel.” “You think you’re better than the rest of us?”
Have you ever experienced any of these? Have they been aimed at you? Perhaps you’ve even said them.
Often these words are spoken in spite… or jest… or disgust. Either 1) because the person being pointed out is obviously far from deserving of the comment; or 2) (which is perhaps the more hurtful of the two?) because the person being pointed out is willing to choose the right when others a) don’t want to, b) did not, or c) would not.
I’ve had my share of these words aimed at me. They sting.
Partly because it really is nice to fit in — but not at the expense of conscience.
Partly because I want everyone to know that the same Power that gives me strength is available to all — but some just don’t seem to understand… or want it.
Partly because I long to be a perfect example… but I know full well, I am not.
I have made my share of poor decisions, committed my share of rash actions, built my share of regrets. I acknowledge that I am still learning, still growing.
Sometimes it is a heart battle. Perhaps unknown to all but the heavenly realm, I harbor bitterness or despair— but not for long!
I have a Saviour, and He calls to my heart. I cannot keep my eyes off Him. I must not. And “in His presence is fullness of joy.”
Sometimes my sin is glaringly obvious. I hate to even think of it… but I must. And I weep. And plead for forgiveness.
And God is merciful. And in my life, most of those around me — those I have hurt, even — are merciful. I know I am specially blessed in that way. Not everyone has that — but everyone — EVERYone — has access to the same merciful God that I do.
In His own words:
[H]im that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. (John 6:37)
Not because of us, but because of Him:
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. (Ephesians 2:8,9*)
And He is the perfect example. He lived this same life that I live — this oh, so human life — yet without sin. Without a single sinful thought, without a single regret.
He knows our infirmities. He feels our sorrows. He understands our trials.
And He assures us:
I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. (Isaiah 41:10*)
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
So, instead of throwing out accusations to those who are reaching Heavenward…
…let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works. (Hebrews 10:24*)
No, I’m not a perfect example — but I long to be. I’m not a perfect example, but I do have a perfect hope and I will not stop pressing toward the mark!
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:13,14*)
*memory verses from VBS—Superstars for Jesus 🙂