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The closer I get to our wedding day, the more I go to Bible study on what it means to be an excellent wife, the more sessions of pre-marital counseling we have, the more I realized that I really am a mess. I’m a sinner. I don’t meet God’s standard of holiness. I don’t love Christian the way I should; I don’t love my family the way I should; I don’t love my friends the way I should; I don’t love those who don’t know the Lord the way I should.
A few weeks ago we had a guest pastor at our church, Dr. Joel Beeke, who has written a number of books on various topics of theology and such. I wish I could remember the exact quote or even who said it, but there was a Christian man (I think a Puritan) who was dying, and, when asked if he was ready to die, he said that he had taken all of his evil deeds and placed them in a heap. And then he had taken all his good deeds and placed them in the same heap. And then he had fled from that heap into the arms of Christ. So yes, he was ready to die.
I’ve been thinking about that almost every day since then. It’s such a vivid picture for me, because while I am quite aware of my evil deeds, I’m also quick to recall to mind all the good things I’ve done. And yet the truth is, in the end, they’ll all go into the same heap that has a big sign next to it: “Won’t get you to heaven.”
I am finding that if I want to give the Holy Spirit a chance to cultivate peace and joy in my heart, I have to leave everything behind. That heap isn’t just something you pile up before your death. It’s something you pile up every single day as you die to self and sin.
Lord, let me never glory in that heap.
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