Grade Yourself #2

A while back I wrote a post about grading ourselves:  taking a realistic look at how we are doing spiritually (see Grade Yourself].  I was discussing this with a friend and she raised a very good question:  what standard are we using to grade ourselves?  In other words, to whom or what should we compare ourselves.

Possibly the obvious choice is Christ.  We are certainly to focus on Him, to imitate Him, to “walk as He walked.”(1 John 2:6).   However, if we compare ourselves to Jesus, we’re going to receive only one grade — “F”  for failure.  We can’t measure up, and ” for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.”(Romans 3:23)

We might chose to compare ourselves to others, but that’s risky as well.  It can lead to sins like pride and self-righteousness (remember the parable of the  pharisee and the tax collector in Luke 18:9-14) because we can always find people who seem more sinful (at least to us) than we are. It can also cause envy and despair because, on the other hand, there will alos be those who are further along on their spiritual path (often we don’t know their whole story either).  As they tell us at the end of every Via de Cristo, the pitfalls are thinking we are something, or thinking we are nothing.

So, it seems there is only one course left, and that is to grade ourselves against ourselves.  How am I doing compared to last year, last month, last week?  Am I progressing and growing more Christ-like?  Or am I content to stay the same?  Am I living water or a stagnant pool?

“But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone, and not in his neighbor.  For each will have to bear his own load.”  Galatians 6:4-5

God will not ask you why you weren’t as good as ____________ (fill in the blank).  He’ll ask if you were the best YOU could be.  So keep growing and grade yourself carefully!

Are You a Christian?

“Evidently, in order to be a manifestation of Christ, we must in some way be like Him.  He is a Christian, who follows Christ, who measures all things by the standard of His approbation, who would not willingly say a word which he would not like to have Christ hear, nor do an act which he would not like to have Christ see. He is a Christian who tries to be the kind of neighbor Christ would be, and the kind of citizen Christ would be, and who asks himself in all the alternatives of his business life, and his social life, and his personal life, what would the Master do in this case?  The best Christian is he who most reminds the people with whom he lives of the Lord Jesus Christ.  He who never reminds anybody of the Lord Jesus Christ is not a Christian at all.”

George Hodges

After reading this quote, what do you think (be honest)?  Do you remind anybody of Christ?  Are you truly a Christian?

“But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.” Romans 13:14

For more on the marks of a Christian see these posts:

How Do You Know You’re a Christian?

What Does Piety Look Like #2

Love Like God

For another quote by George Hodges go to:

An Opportunity?