Today’s Scripture: Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. Matthew 16:24

A few years ago, a Washington, D.C. man sued a local cleaners for losing his pants. Apparently his pants were missing for a few weeks-they were later found-and this man sued for 54 million dollars. We all have favorite shirts and pants, but this guy took things way too far.

It’s easy to look at stories like this and scratch our heads. We think, how can a guy be so nuts? But do you know why he sued? Because he could. He had that right, and he wasn’t going to give it up. What’s worse is this guy was a respected judge and lawyer.

This story makes me think about our call as Christians to sacrifice our rights. How often do we fight and plead for something we think is unfair when the more Christ-like approach would be to let it go. But too often, in a country where people’s rights are paramount, we take this me-first attitude into our relationships with other believers and rip apart good relationships for what usually amounts to something trivial.

God doesn’t want us to be doormats, but sometimes we should sacrifice what is best for us for the good of a brother or sister in the Lord-for the sake of the Gospel and Christian unity.

Carry this thought with you today as you go about your dealings. When you’re tempted to make an issue out of something, ask yourself, “Is this a pair of 54 million dollar pants?”

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder