Leave it behind.

Jeff Weinkauf


Matthew 18:8-9

8 If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire. 9 And if your eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of hell.


Like many of us, I've read this verse with a certain amount of distance or separation in my mind. "Yes yes, of course! If my hand is causing me to sin I should cut it off. Sure! Right! Better to go on with out than to have it and be doomed. We'll said. I agree!"

But really? Really agree? Enough to take action if something I value in my life is actually contributing to my demise? I recognize that there is not a high likelihood for many of us to cut off an actual limb. But what if what we need to do is quit a job that is comfortable, but isolates us from the work God has called us to?

Or what about an attitude we have, or a grudge we keep (for what seems like a good reason)? How about if the appendage we must loose is a damaging relationship. What if gouging out an eye is more like laying down pride and learning to "swim in humility"? Or even just embracing the concept of giving up what I want, because it's not what I need?


It's easy to ignore this verse and it's meaning in my life because on the surface it seems so outrageous. But it's not. I must be willing to take an inventory and act on what keeps me from closeness with God. What prevents me from growing deeper. It's far better to be with-out, than to be separated from God.


Father God, please help me to see clearly the things that need change. Please give me the courage to do surgery where needed and to trust you for the results.

Devotions for May 01

1 Chronicles 14,15
Psalm 132
Matthew 18

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