"What we are in secret is what we really are."
(Read Matthew 5:21 - 30)
This is probably one of the most convicting quotes that hangs on my wall. It is a short sentence with few words but it packs a punch. I am a pastor and people (whether I like it or not) have expectations of me. I am expected to be moral, pure, genuine, caring, truthful, trustworthy, a lover of God, a man of prayer, a counselor, a comforter, an encourager, a preacher of God's Word, or in other words I am expected to be one step shy of Superman (at least a Spirit-filled one).
These are some expectations people place on me... But what am I when I am alone in my office, at home, or at a place where no one can see what I am up to? If you were to observe me in any of these settings it would speak volumes as to who I really am. Do I read God's Word when nobody's watching? Am I kind to my family when it's just the six of us? Do I pray when I am alone? The list goes on.
I know you know that I know I am not even remotely close to being a hint of perfect. I also assume that you know I don't sit around and pray, read the Bible and preach at people all day long either. I am a man who is human and I have flaws (more than I care to share with you). I don't always pray when I should, nor do I study God's Word as diligently as some and I definitely have moments of doubt and questioning.
So what am I in secret? My prayer is that I am the same person when I am around many people... a flawed individual who is striving by the power of the Holy Spirit to live a life that is pleasing to God and reflects the Jesus who is in me. Some days I do this well and other days I fail miserably. However when I do fail I am constantly reminded by this 8 x 10 black picture frame that hangs on my wall "What we are in secret is what we really are."
May my secret life be the same as my public life.
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I currently live on the Gulf Coast of Florida with my beautiful family. The Lord has blessed me with over 25 years of full time ministry. He is and has been faithful.