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Signposts: Daily Devotions

Tuesday, July 14

Do all things without murmuring and arguing so that you may be blameless and innocent.”
—Philippians 2:14, 15a

There are so many small things in the world today that capture our
attention. Most of them don't deserve the energy or focus we give them. How often do you find yourself with no time left to accomplish a pressing task, because your time was consumed by something unimportant?

It happens, for example, at those times when we misplace an item and can't recall where it might be. We may put aside everything else in order to search for what's missing. Our inner agitation keeps us focused on the misplaced item; meanwhile the novel we should be writing, the walk we have been planning to take, the friend we want to call is  put aside. Then, after searching diligently for what is lost, we feel incompetent and forgetful if the item is not found.

How often when we are faced with a situation like this do we argue and murmur under our breath about what we have done? Who has not said, "Oh, I am so stupid. Why did I do or not do that?" These murmurings may seem to come naturally, and may even seem unimportant in the big picture. Yet, they have the effect of pulling us away from our spiritual center. 

When we degrade ourselves, our soul gets scratched and raw. We may take great effort to spend time with positive rather than negative people, but it is equally important not to speak negativity about our own lives. Over time, the negativity we heap on ourselves for our imperfections keeps us from knowing our own wonder.

Valuable possessions will be misplaced. Tasks that are important will be left undone. Mistakes will be made. Failures will occur. The only murmuring that is needed is the soft murmur of God's certain love.

Gracious God, help me be gentle with my imperfections and love myself as you love me.