I was about to leave for work this morning when my wife started laughing and stopped me. "Do your shoes match?", she asked me. Then I took a look down. In fact, my shoes were not a match. I had an old, outside shoe on my left, and a newer, cleaner shoe on my right. She was right! So I quickly got the right shoes on that matched and raced out the door for work.
That got me thinking about the spiritual life...
2 Corinthians 6:14 tells us, "Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?"
Paul was writing to Christians. He was telling them to be careful about who they connected with emotionally and spiritually on an up-close and personal level. His desire was to see children of God form their most meaningful relationships with other children of God.
This is still true today.
I've learned in my life that I need to love everyone. (Easier said than done, but that's the goal.) All people should be treated with kindness and compassion. But, when it comes to my closest relationships, I need to surround myself with people who are living for God and who can help me do the same. I need to have my tightest emotional bonds with people who will inspire me to be a good man, rather than with people who would be happy to see me live as a self-centered, ungodly man.
Yes, I have friends who are not Christians. While living in the Carolinas, one of my friends was a Muslim. I get along just fine with people who are not saved. And I think it's important to do that! It has become apparent to me that if we desire to walk in the footsteps of Jesus, we need to interact lovingly with people who are far from God. But when it comes to close relationships, I have learned I must be careful. I must find a good match for me on a spiritual level. And friend, the same is true for you. This is true for all of us.
When we're getting ready for the day, let's make sure we find shoes that match.
More importantly, when we're forming our closest relationships in life, let's make sure we find a spiritual match. Let's pair up with people who love the same God, have the same values, pursue the same goals, and are headed the same direction. This spiritual match will inspire and motivate us to be the men and women we were created to be.