Quit Keeping Score
By Jill Beran
Who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Philippians 2:6-8 NASB
Do you ever struggle with equality? I do! I hate to admit that early in our marriage I was the official scorekeeper. I knew how often Job, my husband, did something fun and what extra money he spent. Then along came kids and it seemed I was the one tied down… the one who gave up my job, some hobbies, my freedom. It pains me to type that, but friend that was reality. I compared everything and had the mindset that things should be equal.
Thankfully God opened my eyes to the sin that was in my heart and the reality of Genesis 3:16 in my life. We’ve come along over the years, but one Christmas God helped me take what I believe will be a big step in really overcoming this sin. If you struggle with equality, I pray He helps you as well!
Our “12 Days of Christmas” were consumed with sickness and changing plans. Christmas Eve came and one of our little guys was still sick, so I stayed home from church. That was hard and I found myself keeping score again. I didn’t say anything to Job, but as the grumblings went through my mind God put a verse on my heart.
Philippians 2:6 came to mind, “Who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped...”
The phrase, “did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped” hit hard and would not go away. I wasn’t seeking equality with God, but I sure was with my husband. In my eyes his job seemed easy… he had been sick for 4 days, but I’d been taking care of sick kids for weeks. He provided finances, but I did all the shopping, hiding and wrapping. My focus was ALL wrong… that’s what keeping score does… it puts you against them. Friend, our husbands are not our opponent - we‘re on the same team!
As I thought about Jesus’ example all of this became clear. God also reminded me - if Jesus, who is God can give up His desire to be an equal, I need to let it go as well. I must empty myself and be a servant… and friend, if you call yourself a believer, God expects you to do the same.
Now don’t take me wrong… this is not a license for someone to take advantage of you or harm you, but instead an opportunity to live like Jesus did. A chance for us to embrace God’s sovereignty and share His love. This is not an easy task!
But, Jesus, the One who didn’t strive for equality or keep score with us, died so we’d go to heaven. That is not all; He died so today He could live in you and me. Friend, the power that resurrected Christ is in us. It will help us put the score book down and will equip us to serve others, especially the ones we love the most!!
Friend, do you keep score in your marriage or another important relationship? Today begin by thanking God for making you aware of that. Now make a list of the things that have “earned points” for the other person… ask God to help you see these pointing win opportunities from His perspective and thank Him for those as well.
Heavenly Father, Lord thank You for the power of Your Word. Help it sink deep into my heart today. I’m grateful Jesus gave us His desire for equality and I ask You to help me do the same. I know keeping score only creates problems in my marriage, but I pray this knowledge will lead to new action. Help me set the score book down and focus on being a child of Yours who loves and serves others. Thank You for the example Jesus set and may I follow it today and in the days to come. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
For more encouragement, visit Jill at Titus24u.
© 2020 by Jill Beran. All rights reserved.
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Originally published Wednesday, 25 January 2023.