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Show and Tell!
Christian Devotional by Pastor Cecil Thompson

Cecil Thompson

2 Timothy 3:1-5

"But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them."

I am sad and grieved at the reports of moral failure on the part of many modern day Christians, even pastors and leaders of large ministries. We have more tell than show in the way we live out our Christian faith. SORRY! I hate to upset the apple cart of these people, but it is suppose to be Show before we Tell.

We hear all too much and see so very little. Some people say they are being Godly, but it is accurate to say that they are just being nasty. Listen! If someone talks about being godly, yet violates the pattern of godliness in Scripture, do not consider them a role model. In fact we should actively seek out role models that put the Word of God into practice.

Several times I have received a meaningful illustration that has circulated the Internet. It seems that a new pastor came to town and was trying to get acquainted. He decided to use a city bus to simply make the round of the city. As he got on the bus, he gave the driver cash and received his change back from the driver.

When he was seated he started to put his change away. As he looked over the money the driver had returned to him, he noticed that the driver had returned too much change. He tried to rationalize that it was just a small amount and that the bus system would not miss that small amount, but he knew that he had to return it.

As he was leaving the bus he stopped and told the driver that he had made a mistake and had given him too much change. As the driver took the money he said, "You're the new minister who just arrived in town, aren't you?" The minister nodded. The driver smiled broadly. "I will see you in church, I like what I have seen."

(Just a little parenthesis here. Several of those who receive this Daily-E-Votional have been appointed as ministers of the Gospel. As such, we must be the living reality of a godly walk at all times. That means being pure and righteous in all of our actions and having the attitude of Christ. Not thinking of ourselves too highly, but rather considering ourselves as servants of all.)

Now that I have put all of the ministers as well as myself on a guilt trip, let me continue. Ooops! Let me be quick to add that the same instruction applies to all believers, so don't think it is just for us who are called into active ministry. We get paid for being good and you are good for nothing! Yikes! That old joke is below me, but, I am known to say things like that.

It is sad that many feel that spiritual depth is measured by educational achievement. Someone said to me years ago that there are so many doctors in the church today you would think God was sick. That does not mean medical doctors. Some ministers with educational or honorary degrees refuse to be known by anything less than "doctor". Shame on me for bringing this up. I want to be quick to add that there are many who have their doctorates and who live a life of humility and godliness. It is wrong to show pride and be puffed up, using education or titles, rather than their godly walk, as the foundation of their ministry.

It is possible to know about God, and have a knowledge of what it says in the Word of God, but not put it into practice. In today's Scripture, Paul is describing for Timothy that it is necessary to look beyond what these men say and instead see what they are really like. It is usually an ugly sight.

There is an old book that I read many years ago. It is called "In His Steps" by Charles Sheldon. The theme of the book is to live ones life in such a way that the question would always be in front of those who wanted to be like Christ, "What Would Jesus Do"?

In the past few years it has become a Christian fashion statement, especially for young people to wear jewelry with the initials WWJD, which stood for this statement. How sad that many wear it but do not live it. Is it any more tragic that we who go to church and read the Bible and bow in prayer so often fail to live our lives as Jesus would desire? Please renew your commitment right now that with God's help, you will live out WWJD.

Blessings dear hearts. Walk with God today. Trust Him completely and be a blessing.

--- Pastor Cecil


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