Don’t Forget the Speck

By Trillia Newbell

I have an honest question. Is anyone concerned about themselves? It seems that everyone is concerned about everyone else. I read many articles warning us about this that or the other, sharing concerns about “movements” and so on and so forth. I’ve done it too. I write about concerns. I’m not dogging it. But this morning I began to wonder how much more effective we, who are eager to change the world, would be if we began instead of looking at everyone else, began looking at ourselves.

I think this thought was sparked by reading Brett McCracken’s post “Have Christians Lost Their Sense of Difference?” In it he describes going to parties hosted by non-Christians and going to parties hosted by Christians and not noticing a discernible difference.  At both parties the attendees are smoking, drinking, and cussing. There is no distinction. He shares much more than that, I suggest you go on over and read. But his main point is there should be a difference and I agree. He goes on to address holiness.

 I think he is onto something.  

redwood treeDon’t Forget the Speck

We, I think, are a generation who are hungry for grace, freedom, and defending our liberties. We don’t want to be told that we actually grieve the Spirit by our ugliness (Ephesians 4:30). We cry out that everyone only has specks in their eyes and if you identify otherwise your log is more like a big Redwood Tree (Large! Quite large!). You’re simply judgmental, a legalist, and lack grace. No wonder the pursuit of holiness is a bit unpopular. We all only have specks and our specks aren’t doing harm and our specks are forgiven.

But I think we ought not to forget about the specks.  And just to be clear, I’m not saying you need to run and take the speck out of your brother’s eyes.  My point is that obviously Jesus wouldn’t mention specks if he didn’t also intend to communicate that we do indeed sin (Matthew 7: 5). We want to first look at ourselves and remember the log, which goes back to my first point, are we even aware that we have specks?

Jesus died to set us free to walk in our new life in Him (Ephesians 4:17). Christ’s death should motivate me, out of love and thanksgiving, to obey him and try to please him. I really do believe in my heart of hearts that we can pursue Christ and push off the tendency to legalism. I don’t believe that we as Christians are given over to our sin, isn’t that those who have forsaken Christ (Romans 1: 21-24)? It’s like telling someone who struggles with lust, “Well, don’t fight it, you’ll just do it again.” No fight. Same with our pursuit of holiness, pursue and push off legalism.

Let’s run this race, guys! Receive God’s grace, bask in the beauty of His forgiveness, and then pursue Him. It’s okay that we will fail, you’re right! It’s okay that we are filthy rags, amen! But let’s recognize that Christ died so we might have a relationship (yes, a real relationship) with God. We can enter into his presence. That’s amazing! Let’s do it! Let’s pursue Him, learn from Him, learn about Him, and then (gasp) let’s try to emulate Christ.

Who’s with me?

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