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Meet in the Middle

Daily Reading: Galatians 4


Scripture Focus: I entreat you, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You did me no wrong. (Galatians 4.12)


Devotional Thought: Have you ever used the website, "Meet in the Middle"? I use it frequently, when I'm trying to set up points of rendezvous with family and friends. It's a great tool when you don't know exactly where the middle is, and when you don't know what's in the middle!


The Apostle Paul wrote to the Galatians to urge them to meet him in the middle: "Become as I am, for I also have become as you are." In other words, "Let's compromise. Let's meet in the middle." Often, we think of Paul as being inflexible and dogmatic, and at times he could be. But, I think he gets a bad rap in that regard. Paul was very flexible when it was advantageous to be so. On one occasion, he wrote, "To the Jews I became as a Jew... To those under the law I became as one under the law... To those outside the law I became as one outside the law... To the weak I became weak... I have become all things to all people that by all means I might save some" (1 Corinthians 9.20-23). If compromise furthered the mission of the gospel, Paul was all for it! If, however, compromise undermined the cause of Christ, he was against it.


John Wesley, the great English preacher of the 18th Century who began the Methodist movement, followed the maxim, "In the essentials, unity. In the non-essentials, liberty." I guess the trick is to determine what the essentials are. That's not easy, but I would venture to say that too often, we probably name things essential when they really are not.


How about you? Are you willing to meet in the middle?


Prayer: Lord, help me to hold on loosely to my ways, but to hold on tightly to yours. Help me to discover the difference, as I become a student of your Word and a vessel of your Spirit. Amen.


Psalm of the Day: Psalm 106.40-43

40 Then the anger of the Lord was kindled against his people,

and he abhorred his heritage;

41 he gave them into the hand of the nations,

so that those who hated them ruled over them.

42 Their enemies oppressed them,

and they were brought into subjection under their power.

43 Many times he delivered them,

but they were rebellious in their purposes

and were brought low through their iniquity.

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