Some wrongly measure God’s approval of them by their obedience; and thus never feel like they measure up to God. Believer, you must look at your day through a gospel lens. That is, focus in upon the precious atoning work of Christ. When you do this, everyday is a good day no matter your performance and good works. It is the best of days because your sins are forgiven in Christ.
The first problem is that some believers are kept from assurance because they focus exceedingly upon what they do – their performance. Some measure God’s approval of them by their obedience. Good days are determined from bad days by how well they perform spiritually. Consequently, their lives are characterized by a sense of never feeling that they measure up before God.
Let me be transparent. I get up relatively early in the morning. I go out to my office. I battle. But I go and I open my Bible and I begin to read the Scriptures. And as I read, there are mornings that certain things seem to be illumined to my mind. Indeed, it is nothing short of something divine. God is speaking. God is showing me some things. My spirit is invigorated. A spinoff of that is as I begin to pray there is a sense of God. As I offer up my petitions or confessions or whatever, I sense that the Lord has drawn near, and He hears. He forgives. He’s ready to answer. There’s a sense of excitement and vitality and spiritual reality in it all.
And then in a little while, my wife – she’s up and she’s in the kitchen. She’s prepared breakfast. And she calls me on the intercom, and I go over and we sit down at the table. We pray together. We have this wonderful breakfast. We start talking about different things. And then we have our devotional time as a couple. And right now, I might add, we’re just reading a couple of pages from Thomas Brooks. The little book is what inspired Spurgeon. He compiled it for he and his own future wife Susannah. It’s called “Smooth Stones from Ancient Brooks” And so we read those things. We talk about those quotes and those paragraphs that he writes, and bring it into more of a biblical focus, to understand what Brooks was conveying. And then we have prayer together.
And this particular morning, friend, as we prayed together, there was such sweetness and love between us and it’s like corporately, we’re really drawing near to God. And I sense God is pleased. And then I’m ready to go to town. We go to town that morning and somebody cuts me off on the highway. Hey, no problem. I just rejoice in the fact, you know, it’s ok. They’ve got an agenda and I just need to defer. So I go to town, and while I’m going around and fulfilling my errands, I go into a particular place and I just sense the prompting of the Holy Spirit and I share Christ with the person that I’m doing business with. And I’ll tell you, friend, there’s such liberty and such boldness and love that exudes, and I say, “this is great!” And I come back home in the afternoon. I go out to my office, and I start to study or write emails. Man, this is wonderful. I come to the evening, and I think to myself: Good day. This has been wonderful. Thank You, Father.
The next morning I get up. I get up later than I wanted to. I know how much I’ve got to do during the course of the day, so I rush out to the office, I pick up my Bible, I begin to read. I read rather quickly. There is no sense of God. Then I have to re-read some things. Lord, I really want something here and I want it quickly. And so I get to the Bible reading, but there’s no sense of God. There’s nothing that opens up to me. It’s like the Bible’s a closed book. And then I try to pray and it’s more mechanical and superficial. I’m just not getting through.
And then I come to the breakfast table. My wife and I, we begin to talk, and suddenly an issue comes up and we have a disagreement about it. And I say some unkind things. And the way I say it is very unbecoming to Christ. And I leave without reconciling with my wife at the table. I don’t want to have devotions. I don’t want to be a hypocrite. So I go out to my office and I pout for a while.
And then I have to get ready to go to town. Still not having resolved things with my wife. I go to town that day and somebody cuts me off on the highway, and this time I’m muttering under my lips some very un-Christlike things. I’m frustrated. I’m angry. I have no sense of God. There’s no confidence in my witness. Even though I see the need before me as I go to a certain place, a certain establishment to do business, I don’t want to witness it because I don’t want to feel like a hypocrite. And so I go back out and get in my car and I go home. I’m frustrated. I’m burdened down. There’s no sense of God. I come to the end of my day and even though I reconcile with my precious wife, I think to myself: Bad day.
Guess what, friend? When you see your days from a Gospel vantage point, from a biblical perspective, from the precious, magnificent atoning work of Christ, every day is a good day. It is the best of days! You think about that Puritan who sat there with just a cup of water and a piece of stale bread and said, “All of this and heaven too?” You have no idea, friend. Every day is a great day when you look at it through the lens of Calvary.