Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Measure (01/10/13)
TITLE: The Measure of a Man
By Tom Parsons
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The nurse was taking my vitals for my regular checkup at my doctor’s office. She told me to stand against the chart on the wall, kind of child-like, I thought, as she lowered a marker flush with the top of my head.
On my drivers license, I am a full five foot nine. I have been five foot nine since high school days, and, let me tell you, a lot of days have elapsed since high school.
In family pictures, standing next to my sons-in-law, all three of whom are over six feet tall, I appear as a really short old guy. But when my sons-in-law are not around, I can stand my full five foot nine and feel like I really measure up.
“Let’s see,” the nurse said, looking at my feet, “those shoes are about half an inch, so I’m going to record you as five eight.”
That’s when I felt like the incredible shrinking man. A full inch of height lost somewhere along the way of life. When did I lose that inch? Where did it go? Can I get it back?
The truth is, as we get older, our body tends to settle because of gravity. We lose height. In my more than seven decades of life, I spent one decade gaining height, and six losing it. I have to resign myself to the fact that for the rest of my life on this earth, I will fall short of the standard set by my sons-in-law and even short of my own standard set long ago.
Fall short. Like in the verse in Romans, “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” In addition to my physical shortness, I have suffered all my life from spiritual shortness as well. I don’t measure up physically, and I don’t measure up spiritually. Whatever standard is put up, I don’t meet it.
There is nothing I can do about my physical shortcomings, but God did do something to take care of my spiritual shortness. He gave His Son, Jesus, to die for my sins and to offer me His righteousness, which is perfection. In myself, I fall short, but in Christ I am made whole and I can stand tall and satisfy the demands of God’s righteousness. If I went in for a spiritual check up, and they had me stand against the wall and lowered a marker on my head, praise God, they would record my height as perfect. I would measure up to Jesus, not because of my righteousness, but because of His.
In Christ, I no longer fall short. I now enjoy the measure of a Man, Jesus Himself.
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