Sinner. The word sounds so distant when I use it to refer to someone else. Yet, when I turn my gaze inward and let the word be applied to me, it no longer seems so harmless. Now it reminds me of my condition before a Holy and Righteous God. Then and only then do I realize that I have come up short.
You see it’s easy to compare my sin to the sins of others. But the life of a follower isn’t tied up in coming in ahead of someone else, it’s tied up in following. Yet how often do we default to comparing ourselves to others? And in the process we judge them thinking that if we can prove their darkness, somehow we will look like we are in the light.
How foolish we are to defame others in the presence of Christ. How foolish is the pastor or layman who thinks that His church is in competition with the other churches in the area. Should we wish the demise of others for our own benefit? Should we want to see others fail? When they do fail, is that something to rejoice about or mourn over?
The job of a follower isn’t to be so insecure that you have to build a case for your righteousness on the wickedness of others, but rather to follow. Followers follow. Followers obey. Followers trust. Followers are faithful. Followers seek to hear their master say, “well done, my good and faithful servant.” Somehow the sins of others never factor into that evaluation.
I am often guilty of looking to others to prove my righteousness rather than turning to follow you. I ask for your forgiveness for not looking to you for my righteousness in those moment and trying to build a righteousness of my own. Today my eyes are on you. No one has the right to judge sinners but you.