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If Christ were not my Lord today,
I’d treat you all like dirt:
I’d bulldoze people in my path,
Not caring whom I’d hurt.
Without Christ’s Judgment Seat in sight,
I’d never care for WRONG or RIGHT;
I’d never follow purity;
I’d be as mean as I could be—

If Christ were not my Lord today,
I’d scorn all thoughts of guilt:
I’d never think of wrongs I’d done,
Nor in regretting wilt.
Without Christ’s Judgment Seat in sight,
I’d never rein my tongue in tight;
I’d always fight for my own “rights”;
I’d live out hate, perfecting spite—

If Christ were not my Lord today,
I’d never think of other’s needs:
I’d do what feels good at the time,
Unhindered by religious creeds.
Without Christ’s Judgment Seat in view,
I’d do just what I want to do:
I’d slam my door ‘gainst others’ cars,
Pollute the air up to the stars—

And since Christ is my chosen Lord,
For righteousness I want to strive:
His words now in my heart are stored
Because He loves and gives me life.
I do not always please God’s Son—
His work in me is not quite done.
I feel my own unworthiness,
But Jesus is my righteousness

by Gwennon
November 8, 2013

Sometimes when we are driving, I’ll tell the children that we want to watch out for the rights and safety of other drivers (and pedestrians and cyclists) around us. My dad, the Driver’s Ed teacher, drilled that constantly into my brother and me over the years. The reason we want to look out for other’s safety is that this is one of the ways that we can obey Jesus’ command to “love your neighbor” (the person next to you).

Or, if we are parked a bit too close to another car, I’ll say, a bit loudly (because this could be a very teachable moment for on-lookers) “Let’s be careful not to hit our neighbor’s car when we open and close our doors. Because that would not be loving our neighbors. And Jesus wants us to LOVE OUR NEIGHBORS.” I have probably written this before, but I can’t help writing it again: In all the time I have been making this loud, religious proclamation in parking lots, I have never yet been confronted by an affronted passerby telling me to stop teaching my children to love my neighbor by protecting my neighbor’s car. Even people who disagree with me apparently want me to keep on teaching my children to love our neighbors.

It’s a bit strange, actually: the very same people who reject the Bible still want to be “treated right” even though the Bible is the only real and lasting standard of how to do this. Seems a little hypocritical, if you ask me. (And even if you don’t.) But, alas, the world is full of hypocrites, and most of them don’t even bother to go to church.

Please don’t think I have anything against hypocrites. I don’t. I find one every day in my mirror. And, you know, no matter what I do to that mirror, I can’t get rid of the hypocrite I find there every day!

As I was saying, hypocrites are everywhere. Do you want an easy way to detect whether or not someone is a hypocrite? Find out if he is still breathing. If he is not still breathing, chances are he has left all traces of hypocrisy behind.

Anyway, I hope this will not sound too self-righteous. I know for a fact that I really, really need a Savior. In fact, I am finding out far too often for my own comfort how very much I need a Savior.

So, when I tell you that Jesus is my only reason to be nice to you, perhaps you will have a greater understanding of what I mean by that.

Praying for God to reveal your own heart motivations to you today (and to give you the grace to make necessary changes, if needed),


Psalm 34 is a good balm for those of us finding out we need a Savior. Maybe you will enjoy it, too.

P.S. This being a Friday, I had considered sharing a haiku with my regular readers. But once this new poem came waltzing insistently into my heart, the haiku had to wait. Perhaps next Friday will be the day to launch the haiku I have been hoarding for several weeks.