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Realizing the presence, promise, and power of the Kingdom of God.

Examine Yourself!

We must pay more careful attention to our lives.

Wherefore let us know nothing more profitable for ourselves than to examine ourselves daily, every day of our life reviewing that dubious life, and keeping account of our words and thoughts, and shuddering at human life, to ponder without ceasing this aforesaid end of the roadway, that is of our life, while we spurn all the pleasures of this world.

  - Columbanus, Sermon IX (Irish, 7th century)

Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves.

  - 2 Corinthians 13.5

Columbanus offers sound advice, consistent with both the Old and New Testaments. We must pay more careful attention to our lives, every day, in every situation, in order to make sure that we are walking in the faith and not simply reflecting the unsaved age around us.

We are not our own; we have been bought - soul and body - with the precious blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. We belong to Him; therefore, we ought to serve Him at every moment, with all our words and deeds.

But unless we develop the ability to keep watch over our souls and lives in every situation, we shall too easily stray from the roadway of eternal life into the shoals and swamplands of our unbelieving age. The world is unrelenting in its determination to squeeze us into its mold. If we are not vigilant over our lives - all our words and deeds - we may end up betraying the One we confess to love by an unworthy walk.

How to do this? How to maintain this ongoing self-watch that can keep us on the path of righteousness? Certainly it will help if we set time apart during the day for reflection and prayer. If only for a few minutes, at regular intervals throughout the day, taking the time to come before the Lord, to reflect on what has gone before and prepare for what lies ahead - such an investment can help us to be better stewards of our time and opportunities for serving the Lord.

Planning carefully can also help. Make sure your time is accounted for before you arrive at it, and you will be less likely to squander your moments or have them stolen from you by the wiles of the devil or the pull of the world.

By such means let us make a conscious determination to live each moment of our lives unto the Lord, and to "spurn the pleasures of this world" so that we may reflect and enjoy that closeness of Jesus, and that filling of His Spirit, which are the true source of lasting joy and spiritual pleasure.

Every moment, every situation, every choice, every word and deed - all our lives and all the time of our lives, dedicated to and lived for the glory of the Lord: An active and effective self-watch can help us to make progress toward this ideal.

T. M. Moore, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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