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Absolutely Above Suspicion

by J. M. Farro on August 16th, 2020

   “For we take thought beforehand and aim to be honest and absolutely above suspicion, not only in the sight of the Lord but also in the sight of men.”  2 Corinthians 8:21 AMPC

   For most of his life, my father worked as an executive for a prestigious firm in New York City.  When I was 20 years old, I got a job working for a Manhattan company that was moving to New Jersey, which is where we lived.  My dad was thrilled when I told him that, for several weeks, I would be working in an office building that was within walking distance of his company.  One afternoon, I walked with my dad back to his building after we had lunch together.  As I reached up to give my dad a kiss on the cheek in the lobby, he froze and said sternly, “You can’t kiss me in here,” and then he walked away.  To this day, I remember the pain of rejection that I felt at that moment.

   I didn’t realize it at the time, but my father taught me a very valuable life lesson that day.  He taught me that appearances do matter.  No one in my dad’s workplace lobby could have known that I was his daughter.  All they saw was a young woman kissing an older man.  Those who knew my father only casually at his workplace would have known that I was most definitely not his wife, and they immediately would have drawn the wrong conclusions.  My dad could have thought, “I’m not doing anything wrong.  I don’t care if people get the wrong idea.”  Instead, he cared about people’s perception at his workplace.

   Scripture tells us: “Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone.” (Romans 12:17 NIV)  In other words, God cares very much about appearances.  The Amplified translation of this verse says that we should always be “aiming to be above reproach in the sight of everyone.”  This means that we should not only be totally innocent of wrongdoing, but that we should also avoid any suspicion of wrongdoing.  The Bible says: “For we take thought beforehand and aim to be honest and absolutely above suspicion, not only in the sight of the Lord but also in the sight of men.” (2 Corinthians 8:21 AMPC)  The Passion Translation says it this way: “For we intend to do what is right and we are totally open both to the Lord’s inspection and to man’s.”

   As Christians, you and I are being closely examined, inspected, and scrutinized everywhere we go.  Let’s not give the devil, or anyone else, any ammunition to use against us or our most cherished relationships.

   Lord, please plant deeply in my heart the truth that You are very concerned about appearances, and that You expect me to have the same mindset.  Remind me often that I, and my actions, are being scrutinized everywhere I go, and that suspicious minds are all around me.  Thank You that as I hold myself to the highest of standards in my conduct, conversation, and companionships, You will protect and bless my most cherished relationships!

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