Examine Yourself

Asymptomatic. We’ve been hearing that word a lot lately. In medicine, any disease is classified asymptomatic if a patient tests as having a disease or infection but experiences no symptoms. When people ask us, “How are you feeling?” we respond based on the symptoms, not on whether or not we are ill.

Five years ago, a routine mammogram discovered I had a small tumor which was cancerous. I felt perfectly fine (except for the discomfort of having a mammogram). No symptoms of cancer, but it was there. However, the subsequent treatments required me to endure many different symptoms, reminding me that I was ill.

Isn’t this also a picture of our spiritual lives? We think that we are fine. We are reading our Bible, serving the Lord, and joyfully singing His praises. We feel great! However, without regular examinations we may be missing the sin that is growing within us. Perhaps we have an attitude of pride, a grudge against our neighbor, a twinge of envy taking root, or an impure thought. Or a selfish motive, a twisting of biblical truth, or an acceptance of unscriptural beliefs. 

Just as medical doctors know that we need to have regular checkups to keep our bodies healthy, and that we must endure the treatments if anything is found, Paul gave us the same admonition in II Corinthians 13:5 for our spiritual lives.

“Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? —unless indeed you fail to meet the test!”

You may think you are fine, but when was the last time you asked God to examine your heart, mind, and actions? When have you prayed like David in Psalm 139:23-24?

“Search me, O God, and know my heart!
    Try me and know my thoughts!
And see if there be any grievous way in me,
    and lead me in the way everlasting!”

I urge each of you to not only make sure you get annual physical examinations to stay physically healthy, but to also examine your heart. Go to the Great Physician and ask Him to show you where you need to change. Where you need to allow Him to cut out the sin deep inside you. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that if I feel fine, I am fine. Sin is like cancer with the potential to invade and spread to other areas of your life. It doesn’t remain dormant. Find it. 

There is a cure.

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” I John 1:9

Dealing with sin is never easy. The treatment can be painful. It can be exhausting, but it will always be worth the struggle.

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About Lynnette Goebel

Lynnette is the Director of Operations at RHMA Headquarters in Morton, Illinois. She has attended the same small-town church for most of her life. She adores her pastor’s wife.