Too many Christians are simply going through the motions. Back in the days when railways employed watchmen at railroad crossings, there was a deadly train accident. When the watchman at the accident site appeared in court before a judge, he was asked two questions: “Were you there when the accident occurred?” and “Were you waving your lantern?” He replied yes to both questions. The judge could file no charges against the watchman and released him.

On the way out of the courtroom, the watchman muttered to himself, “I’m glad he didn’t ask if my light was on.” He did everything right, but neglected to do the most important thing. His going through the motions cost several people their lives.

This is a good picture of Christianity today, only we’re not talking about people’s lives, but their eternal souls. Week after week, we go to church. We listen to the pastor preach, and even put money in the offering plate. But when we wave our lanterns to warn of impending danger, the world doesn’t pay any attention. Do you ever wonder why? It’s because of worldliness: we are going through the motions, and there is no flame in our lanterns.

Is there anything we can do about our deficiency? Yes, we must humble ourselves and acknowledge our sins before God. We need to see that our friendship with the world has made us enemies of God and quenched the flame in our lanterns. Only when we humble ourselves before the Lord will we find grace.

God cares enough for His children to point out their shortcomings. If He has convicted you of worldliness in your life today, take it as evidence of His great love, not harsh judgment. Why don’t you take a few moments to get right with Him now?

The ship’s place is in the sea, but God pity the ship when the sea gets into it. The Christian’s place is in the world, but God pity the Christian if the world gets the best of him. — Unknown Author

Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.