Paul says that, no matter who we are, we must appear before the judgment seat of Christ. We tend to think of this moment of judgment as some far-off event, but it needn’t be. Right here and now, we can learn to live in the white light of Christ’s penetrating gaze. However difficult his judgment may be to face at first, it will eventually bring us delight, revealing all the wonderful work God has done inside us.

Keep yourself steadily before Christ’s judgment, and remember his command: “Do not judge” (Matthew 7:1). A wrong temper of mind about another soul will end in the spirit of the devil, no matter how saintly you are. One worldly judgment about another person, and the end of it will be hell inside you.

Whenever you are tempted to judge, drag the impulse at once to the light and say, “My God, I am guilty.” If you don’t, hardness will set in. It isn’t only God who punishes us for sin. Sin establishes itself in the sinner and pays the sinner back in full: the price is that, gradually, you become so used to sinning that you no longer recognize it as sin.

No amount of struggling or praying will enable us to stop sinning. It takes the power of the Holy Spirit to come in and set it right. “Walk in the light, as he is in the light” (1 John 1:7). Many of us think that walking in the light means walking according to the standard we’ve set for other people. That is not God’s standard. Walk in the light of the holiest you know—the Lord Jesus Christ—and let his judgment have its way with you.

Wisdom from Oswald

We are not fundamentally free; external circumstances are not in our hands, they are in God’s hands, the one thing in which we are free is in our personal relationship to God. We are not responsible for the circumstances we are in, but we are responsible for the way we allow those circumstances to affect us; we can either allow them to get on top of us, or we can allow them to transform us into what God wants us to be.  Conformed to His Image, 354 L