Thursday, July 16, 2009
Closet Door and the pursuit of 6' 4"
As a child growing up, dad would measure us once a year on our birthday. He would put a mark with the date inside the closet door so we could see how much we had grown in the past year. I wanted to grow up and be much taller than my dad who was a little man of about five foot eight. I dreamed of being six feet four inches and playing basketball for the Boston Celtics. The day came when I was about sixteen that I became taller than my dad. That was an exciting day for me. That excitement was short-lived as soon after that I stopped growing. I began to realize I wouldn’t even come close to the six-foot mark, and basketball would not be my life long profession.
These were all wrong standards for me to be using in measuring my life. I guess we all get in trouble when we hold up wrong standards. By the grace of God someone shared the gospel with me. I saw myself measured by the only true standard – the Bible, God’s Word. When compared to that perfect standard I fell “short of the glory of God – way short!” Without any doubt I was a great sinner standing in condemnation before a holy God lost in my sin and in desperate need of a Savior. And the “good news” part of the gospel was that Jesus Christ had paid the penalty for my sin on an old rugged cross and He offered me forgiveness of sin through a supernatural change where my sin could be exchanged for His righteousness. The wrath of God could be totally satisfied and I could be born again into the family of God. My part was to repent from my sins and believe by faith in the finished work of Christ in my behalf. He drew me, He enabled me, He saved me, He keeps me, he is making intersession me, he is preparing a place for me and He has promised to return for me so that where He is I can be also (Heaven). Wow – What amazing grace! (Rom. 3:23, 6:23, 5:8; Eph. 2:8-9, Jn. 10: 27-30, 14:1-6)
Many years have gone by since my boyhood dream of being a professional basketball player. More than 30 years have gone by since the day I responded to the gospel with repentance and faith. He, Jesus Christ is now my life. I still fall short of His glory but the gospel is now forever applied to my life! Praise His dear name. (Gal. 2:20) God gave me a new heart and a new life. Now I live under the authority of the Scriptures and measure my life accordingly. And because I’m walking “in” His righteousness and because of His sacrifice the standard is always met.
God measures us by His Word – it is His measuring door. He knew we could never measure up so he provided the necessary “lifter” – Jesus Christ. Being found “in Him” (Phil. 3:7-10) and having His “lifting” righteousness is the only mark (Phil. 3:14) that matters in this life. That’s far more important than growing up to be six-foot four as measured on the closet door!
Dad always measured us on our birthdays. One never knows when you’ll have the last opportunity to be measured by God before the judgment. A King named Belshazzar thought he measured up just fine but then God came and measured by the only measurement that counts and this is what God told him (Daniel 5:27), “God has numbered the day of your kingdom and brought it to an end, you have been weighed in the balance (measured on God’s door) and found short! Jesus paid it all so you could “measure up” with God and Jesus alone is the very door by which everything is measured upon. (Jn. 10:7-10)
Do you measure up? Are you ready to be measured?