We who preach and write, do so in a manner different from which the Scriptures have been written. We write while we make progress. We learn something new every day. We speak as we still knock for understanding...If anyone criticizes me when I have said what is right, he does me an injustice. But I would be more angry with the one who praises me and takes what I have written for Gospel truth than I would be with the one who criticizes me unfairly. -Augustine

Friends of the Family, Part 1

I’d like to introduce you to my five good friends whom I have enjoyed so much that I’ve invited them into my home. Their names are Grace, Mercy, Compassion, Hope, Truth, and Love.

GRACE is an attractive older lady who makes you feel like you are the most important person in the world when you’re in her presence. I am often humbled by her lavish graciousness, which causes her influence over me to grow even stronger. I’ll never forget the lessons that she taught me about my tendency to place responsibility above relationship. She saw how this was affecting my family and enabled me to see that they would more willingly follow humility than authority.

Soon, Grace asked if she could invite her twin sister to visit. When I met her I was amazed at their similarities. But there was one remarkable difference. MERCY had some serious memory problems. In most areas, her memory was exact–but when it came to offenses, she seemed to not be able to remember yesterday. What was most remarkable about Mercy’s influence in my life was that the more I got to know her, the more I was able to see my family from an entirely different perspective–from God’s perspective. Mercy seemed to change my relationship with my children and spouse almost overnight.

And wouldn’t you know it, there was another sister! Grace and Mercy introduced COMPASSION to me early one morning. Compassion began coming over early in the morning–every morning (see Lamentations 3:22-23)–even before the coffee was brewing! Her influence was contagious. My kids loved waking up to her voice. She put a smile on everyone’s face and my oldest son loved her the most. She made him completely forget about yesterday’s failures–and she helped me to practice her same forgetfulness.

Join me as I introduce more of my friends in our next Lamplighter Moment!

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