January 24

The haughty eyes of people shall be brought low, and the pride of everyone shall be humbled; and the Lord alone will be exalted in that day.  Isaiah 2:11

Do not be deceived; God is not mocked.  Galatians 6:7

What does it mean to mock God? 

My first thought was of people who deny God’s existence or disrespect His name by using it in a profane way (when swearing), or who make unkind comments or attempts at jokes about and to people of faith.  Then I did more reading and thinking and came up with some other thoughts that hadn’t occurred to me before.  

Have you ever felt the sting of someone judging your faith, be it verbally or in the way they looked at or interacted with you?  How would you feel if you shared with someone that you were experiencing anxiety or illness and they responded with “you’re just not praying right” or “feeling anxiety is a sign from God that you don’t trust Him enough” or even “if you had a better relationship with Christ, this wouldn’t be happening,” or anything equally as hurtful?  Have you ever felt that way about your own life, that you (or your prayers) were not worthy of God’s attention and response and his love and grace?

Have you seen someone at church that you haven’t seen in a long time and thought to yourself, ‘they haven’t been here in so long, they should make more of an effort to come to church’?  What if you looked at them and said to yourself, ‘I haven’t talked to that person in a long time, I will go over to them today and ask how they have been. I hope they have been okay.’ I feel like that second choice would give me a better feeling than the other. 

The word haughty in the verse from Isaiah is defined in the dictionary as arrogantly superior and disdainful, which is what we are (whether we mean it or not), or how we appear to others when we judge them as less than ourselves, as not good enough, and especially not as good as we see ourselves.  If we take something that God loves and feel scorn toward it, we are mocking Him. 

Remember: ‘My command is this, love one another as I have loved you.’ John 15:12 and

‘Now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.’ 1 Corinthians 13:13

Loving God, keep it on our hearts that we love and serve you best when we love and care for others. Give us kind and generous hearts and help us set aside our judgement of others. Help us to set aside our pride for what we have done and celebrate and honor you instead, remembering that you have given us all our gifts that we claim as our own works. Most of all, we thank you for loving us as we are. Amen.

Peace,

Lynda Tysdal