Devotional: God, I thank You

“The Pharisee stood up and prayed about himself: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector.’” Luke 18:11

JfT2Wow, I’m glad that I’m not like that Pharisee––he sounds so arrogant! Oh, wait…

How often do we look at others’ sins and think how glad we are that we’re not as sinful as them? I’ll admit it––I do. I was raised in the church. I have Christian parents. I never went through a “rebellious” time as a teenager, partying and drinking and such. And so, it’s been pretty easy for me to consider myself not such a bad sinner. I’m pretty good (Mark 10:18).

And then I realized how sinful my heart was. I may not be committing the sins that result in severe external consequences, but I may also have a much bigger problem––pride. Although I thank God that I haven’t been tested in regard to other sins, Scripture is filled with warnings against pride, as well as other “internal” sins. Proverbs 16:18: “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” Pride was the downfall of many (2 Chronicles 26:16). Even more sobering, it tells us that God will humble the proud (Isaiah 2:17).

Now, I thank God that His Holy Spirit is living in me and convicts me––daily––of my sin. It’s only when He does this that I can fully realize how much I need Him and the salvation He offers, and how little I deserve it. God, I thank You that You chose to save me, a sinner, and that your Spirit leads me to realize how much I need Your grace.

By Lisa Grimenstein

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