Just Like Me

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On our recent trip to Maui, we took a very interesting submarine tour of the coral reefs.  At 125 feet below the surface there is a whole different world of God’s grand and glorious creation.

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As we peered through the port holes, we saw brightly colored schools of fish, an eel, several sharks, different kinds of coral plants and a submerged ship being used as a reef and habitat for fish.  The plants can only grow as deep as sunlight penetrates and small fish can only live where the coral plants grow.  When the sub moved off the reef, there was nothing but dark, murky ocean water.

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In the sub there were 47 molded seat indentations on the bench going the length of the submarine and they fill it to capacity-47 people.  You could not scoot down a few inches to give your seat mate additional space. So there I sat, squeezed in between “the man” and my husband, shoulders hunched with my arms pulled in towards my middle trying to make myself smaller. It was not a pleasant ride.   I kept glancing sideways at “the man” who was head and shoulders taller than me with his arms crossed, resting on his ballooning, well-endowed mid-section. I knew he was feeling the squeeze but I only felt sympathy for myself.  My cynical, critical mind critiqued him well!

Later I was thinking about this obese man and several others I encountered along the way.  There were people on our airplane that could hardly navigate the aisle much less fit into a seat. The thought suddenly hit me. They were just like me at one time.  Just like me!  I can not pride myself with thinness. The only thing I can smugly say is “I am not like them”.   I admit I  am “a little” overweight. I know it and am seriously, actively working on it.  But because I did not see myself  like them, I bestowed on myself the credentials to judge them. Hummmm.

The liar didn’t start out intending to lie and the murderer probably never dreamed he would kill. The prostitute was once pure and the list goes on. We choose, through a series of many decisions, to let ourselves become who we are; often unintentionally, often never imagining we will become who we are. Very few obese persons really desire to be overweight.  If we don’t stop our destructive habits before they get bad, they will control our lives. One lie does not make a person a habitual liar nor does 10 pounds make a person obese but it sure can put us on that path.

Usually I will strike up a conversation with a seat mate but this time I sat there miffed that I was the one who had to sit beside him and his equally oversized wife. I did not say one word to this fellow Purina dealer. The Apostle Paul said, “Those that compare themselves among themselves are not wise” (II Corinthians 10:12).   Jesus had some sobering words, “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you” (Matthew 7:1-2)

“Just like me” may not be the safest yardstick of measure.  Paul says, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control”.  The yardstick needs to be against the truth of God’s Word.  “Against such there is no law”. (Galatians 6:22-23)

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 Other pictures of our Maui trip

1 Comment »

  1. Julia Said:

    You show Gods wisdom well. I’ve judged others also but often remind myself to take the judge plank out of my own eye before I search for the splinter in others. This was so well said.

    Like


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