1 Samuel 26:9-11 “And David said to Abishai, Destroy him not: for who can stretch forth his hand against the LORD’S anointed, and be guiltless? David said furthermore, As the LORD liveth, the LORD shall smite him; or his day shall come to die; or he shall descend into battle, and perish. The LORD forbid that I should stretch forth mine hand against the LORD’S anointed: but, I pray thee, take thou now the spear that is at his bolster, and the cruse of water, and let us go.”
No one is looking… Surely I wasn’t seen… They will never miss just one…
These are things I told myself, or were told me by my so called ‘friends’ as they dared me to steal a candy bar from the local news and hobby store. Before I ever made it to the door, a hand gripped my shoulder and said, “Come with me you thief.”
With my criminal days behind me, I look back and think about the lesson I had learned – or had I?
Each of us are presented with opportunities; good and bad. But often, that which may seem as good, in light of God’s Word is bad. For instance, something so small as a notebook, pens or a computer mouse are offered freely in your workplace to aid you in your job. Your budget is tight and things like these seem to be a luxury in light of the necessities for your family.
You tell yourself, the company makes a good profit. I am a good employee. I should be able to use some small items for my personal use… and you place it in your pocket. No one saw you – or so we think.
2 Chronicles 16:9 “For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. Herein thou hast done foolishly: therefore from henceforth thou shalt have wars.”
It was a very sobering day when the truth of that scripture hit my heart. I began to apply it to many situations in my life. If that verse is true – and it is – then, God, you saw me when I put those rubber bands into my pocket? You caught me red-handed when I saw that the cashier had made a mistake in ringing my order. You brought it to my attention for the very reason and opportunity to be honest.
Father, You were there beside me as I watched that show that has transgressed all ten commandments. You were next to me as I viewed those inappropriate things on my computer. You heard what I heard through my headphones or in my car that worldly music that does not honor You.
Father, You were in the conversation when I said those things about my boss, my coworkers, my fellow church members, that staff member and my pastor. You, who can hear the voice in my mind, when I saw that woman and lusted in my heart after her.
I belabor the point because we are ALL of us – guilty.
As we confess and repent of these things, we must ask God to aid us in how we see things; gain His perspective and truly make the decision that would befitting an ambassador of Jesus Christ.
David’s heart is revealed to us in Psalms 101:
Psalm 101:1-8 “A Psalm of David. I will sing of mercy and judgment: unto thee, O LORD, will I sing. I will behave myself wisely in a perfect way. O when wilt thou come unto me? I will walk within my house with a perfect heart. I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me. A froward heart shall depart from me: I will not know a wicked person. Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer. Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me. He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight. I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the LORD.”
David practiced personal holiness which is the ability to govern ourselves in the manner pleasing to God according to the Bible. For most of us, we are the ones who set the limits of what we will and won’t do. True holiness allows God to set the limit.
You may say, ‘Well, look how David turned out?!’
Does someone else’s failures justify my same sinful choices? Again, we all have been given opportunity. What we do with that opportunity will reflect greatly on us and who it is we represent. I assume a great deal that every child of God is known in their workplace as such.
Specifically; have you have declared yourself to be a Christian and are a visible, vocal and vibrant witness for the Lord Jesus Christ? Or are the covert kind who acts like the world, talks like the world, looks like the world and never shows any outward sign of the transformation that Jesus paid for so dearly?
Once again, we are all given opportunity. The choice we make to be honest, to honor those in authority – even if do not agree with their decisions. To refrain from activities that would cast a bad light on our testimony, and choose those things which would expose us to scrutiny, criticism and even persecution.
We, here in America, enjoy such freedom that we are not persecuted for our faith – but that will not last forever. Others around the world are not so fortunate. Their standing for Christ could very well cost them their lives and the lives of their family.
It is human nature to be preferential in our treatment of some over others. There are those we receive readily and those we have difficulty being in their presence. Some may have quirks that annoy. Others may have visible sins that are not socially acceptable. Still others may live in such a different circumstance that we just cannot relate.
No matter who it is, where they come from, or what they have done – Christ died for all because He loves all.
2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
From time to time, I feel the need for a ‘confession session’ with my Heavenly Father. Fact is, it is a daily occurance. I declare to Him what it is I’ve done; what I’ve said (in my heart AND out loud); and what I have failed to do. I have found that being utterly and totally transparent with my God has led to such a healthy relationship with Him.
When my heart is right with God and man, I can then obey Him with a clear conscience that I am operating with integrity and following His lead. If sin goes unconfessed, I open the door to be tempted to be placed further into bondage by deceiving my own heart.
Today, we will all be presented with opportunity. Our own personal integrity; our personal holiness must shine through to others if we are to let them see that Biblical Christianity can make a real difference in our life.
The world just wants to know if God is real – and we can show them by how we respond to those opportunities.