Sunday, December 16, 2007

The Counterfeit Counterfake

Charles Swindoll reported the following story (Growing Deep in the Christian Life, p. 159-60):

Several years ago, in Long Beach, California, a fellow went into a fried chicken place and bought a couple of chicken dinners for himself and his date late one afternoon. The young woman at the counter inadvertently gave him the proceeds from the day-a whole bag of money (much of it cash) instead of fried chicken. After driving to their picnic site, the two of them sat down to open the meal and enjoy some chicken together. They discovered a whole lot more than chicken--over $800! But he was unusual. He quickly put the money back in the bag. They got back into the car and drove all the way back. Mr. Clean got out, walked in, and became an instant hero. By then the manager was frantic. The guy with the bag of money looked the manager in the eye and said, "I want you to know I came by to get a couple of chicken dinners and wound up with all this money. Here." Well, the manager was thrilled to death. He said, "Oh, great, let me call the newspaper. I'm gonna have your picture put in the local newspaper. You're the most honest man I've heard of." To which they guy quickly responded, "Oh no, no, don't do that!" Then he leaned closer and whispered, "You see, the woman I'm with is not my wife...she's uh, somebody else's wife."

Before we jump all over the counterfiet counterfake, we might take time to realize that we are often living two lives ourselves. There is the normal, God-fearing, respectful life we live. Then there is the tempted, dark, sinful life we war against coming to be. This is why good deeds aren't enough. Our good deeds cannot make up for our transgressions. Is there really such a thing as citizen of the year? I say that citizen is a sinner, an individual in need of a merciful, gracious, and longsuffering God!

In a sense there is a part of us that hinges on being a forgery, a fake, a phony. But with God's help we can be less of that person and more like God. "Sweet will of God, still fold me closer, till I am wholly lost in Thee." ~ Leila Morris (1900)

"For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all." ~James 2:10

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