Today’s Reading: 2 Corinthians 13:1-14
A man went to his doctor for a check-up. The doctor did a very thorough examination and then asked the nurse to send the man’s wife into his office. The doctor said, I have some very bad news, your husband is very sick. The good news is that there is hope. If you will take him home, cook him three hot meals each day and take care of all his needs, he should be recovered in about two months or so. Two Months! The Lady left the doctor’s office and went out and got into the car with her husband. The man asked, Well, what did the doctor say? The wife looked at her husband and said, ¨Your gonna die!¨
Some people go to the doctors after they become sick. Some people go to the doctors to keep from getting sick. And some people go to the doctors to get even healthier than they are.
Paul says in 2Corinthians 13:5 “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Prove yourselves”
Charles Swindoll suggests that this exercise is like “standing in front of the full-length mirror of memory.” There are two ways to look at the past and both of them have great value.
1) Count our blessings
- Material needs
- Answered prayer
- Spiritual progress
Since inventory involves counting, this is very appropriate. The value of counting these blessings are obvious. Or are they?
- Makes us appreciate how well we are
- Makes us more generous
- Helps us to sympathize with those in need
- We can use these memories when times become difficult
- Turns our thoughts toward God
(2) Examine the Negative Aspects
- Trials—teaches us patience and compassion
- Failures—teaches us the value of confession
The benefit of looking at our negative past is so that we will not make the same mistakes again. As the saying goes, “Those who ignore the past are doomed to repeat its mistakes again and again.” However, don’t look too long. If you do, you may fall prey to a gloomy disposition which Satan may use to defeat you.