m glad i still remember it! trust me on this one. sometimes i’m a bad churchgoer *sheepish* (wouldn’t it be nice if there was a sheep smiley? oooh)
anyway, it was a fantastic teaching on Jonah chapter 3 (part 3 of a 4 part series) and how when Jonah finally went to the city of Nineveh to preach the horrible message of: “in 40 days this city will be no more,” Jonah got fiercely angry and frustrated with G-d. After he told them the message even the king fasted for repentance! the whole city and countryside was repenting and Jonah was FURIOUS with G-d for giving grace to “those people”. You know how it’s said: “thooose people” with a sneer and a huffy sigh.
Pastor Chuck preached on how the congregation is called to go into the nearby area and do G-d’s will. And the problem that gets in the way… is self-righteousness. He preached about the different ways we show self-righteousness and how all of us are succeptible to it.
After basically breaking my conscience in half (i am self-righteous) he went on to preach about how we don’t accept G-d’s grace to others because we think our standard of righteousness and our expectations are higher than the Almighty’s! When we don’t accept G-d’s grace to others, we put ourselves above them and cannot touch them. We cannot truly love them and get into their dirt and show them Messiah until we strip off self-righteousness and proclaim our own need for G-d’s grace.
My favourite part was when he quoted Tozer saying something like:
“A new convert is like a beggar telling other beggars where the food is to be found. But later that person becomes an ex-beggar who tells the other beggars to go find food.” and he asked us which were we, a beggar or an ex beggar?
Do you see the difference?