Luke 18:11-14 ESV
The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.’ But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other.
If you’ve ever taken a picture of yourself into a mirror, you’ve probably noticed that everything is flipped to the opposite side. The ring or watch on your left arm is now on your right. But nothing actually changes…you’re just viewing the image differently.
It wasn’t what the Pharisee said about himself that Jesus corrected — it was how he was viewing these things. Without a doubt, we should have goals associated with growth and maturity in our walk with God. But while our human nature will often see them as a source of pride, we need to consciously flip our perspective to one of humility and gratefulness to God for leading us every step of the way.
We all have areas that we struggle in and we should never look down on others who might be struggling in a different way. Instead, take the time to help and encourage them. Remember, in the Kingdom of God, it’s the servant of all who is the greatest of all!