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Standards

June 24th, 2009

“One who abides by (the perfect Law) . . will be blessed in what he does.” James 1.25 NAS

“Moral compromise steals something of what God made you to be.”

My¬†thoughts today are about “standards.”

The Federal Government formed the National Department of Standards and Measurements in the early 1800’s with the responsibility of setting the nation’s definitive standards for weights and measurements. Those standards would assure a constant and consistent means of measurement. If you want to know accurately what an ounce or gallon, or inch or yard, or pound or ton, or the weight of an ounce of gold, the Bureau of Standards and Measurements is where you can find a reliable and unchanging standard that applies to everyone equally.

In life, you need an established standard that will not fluctuate or be adjustable just because someone wants it to be. That’s why there are rules in sports, laws for driving, and ordinances that govern each community. Imagine trying to live without those.

The Bible offers you exactly that, an accurate and consistent standard for knowing who you are, what you are about, and how you are doing. When there is no single, predetermined standard then anyone’s standard is considered as good as anyone else’s, and that allows variance and confusion. After Joshua’s leadership of Israel, there was a chaotic time when “there was no king in Israel; everyone did that which was right in his own eyes.” Judges 17:6 NKJV. That’s not a good thing.

God loves you too much to leave matters of eternal importance to the unpredictable whims and varied preferences of individuals, even your own. “All a man’s ways seem right to him, but the Lord weighs the heart.” Proverbs 21:2 NIV. The context of today’s verse is about the wisdom of your looking into the mirror of God’s Word to see clearly how your attitudes and actions accurately reflect the standards of God’ Word, “the perfect Law of liberty.”

Life, and your own humanity, will often tempt you to make yourself an exception, to justify doing what you want or what seems right or feels good to you at the time, but God’s way is always and only the right way! “But as for God, His way is perfect.” Psalm 18:30 NIV. A successful life requires an established standard that will not fluctuate nor be adjustable. When you compromise your standard, you lose some very important part of what God made you to be.

Here’s what God promises you will happen, “But we all, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being changed into the same image.” 2 Corinthians 3:18 NKJV. You can be changed. You can meet the standard without falling short or failing to live up to its measurement. But you will not be changed unless you accept God’s standards and follow them diligently. He does not adjust them at your wish. Jesus said, “If you abide in Me and My Words abide in you . . .” John 15:7. That’s when God’s blessings are released upon your life . . and you “will be blessed in all you do.” James 1:25.

James wrote that you are to “look intently at the perfect Law and abide in it . . .” You are to be committed, not casual. You must do so consistently, not occasionally. You must dwell in its truth, not straying from its wisdom and command.

My prayer for you today is to accept only God’s righteousness, always. And be blessed!

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