Thursday, August 4, 2011

Transparent

I am sure that we tell ourselves that it is out of respect for God that we get all dressed up on Sunday mornings for church. Iron out every last wrinkle in that skirt. Make-up applied just perfectly. Smelling good. The kids are looking all adorable and cute in their Sunday best with bows and ribbons, maybe even hats and gloves.


Who are we kidding? Some of that might be respect for God, but most of it is about making ourselves look good before others. Now, I'm not going to go into some tirade about man-pleasing versus God-pleasing (although I may in a future post), but here is the issue I have.
We need to be transparent! Like a window.

You ever pull into the drive on a summer day and see the sun reflecting off of another car's windshield? Shoo wee that's bright! And then if you get out and go look closer at the car, you can see the empty snack bar wrappers, diet coke cans, books, toys, DVDs, etc.


That's how we need to be. Reflecting the light of the Son of God, but still transparent so others can see the filth and wretched person we are without Christ.


God gives examples of this in the Bible.

The author of Hebrews tells us that, “By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” [Hebrews 11:7]


Noah was a faithful and righteous man. The entire world was wicked around him. Noah had never even seen rain. But when God told him to build an ark in order to save his family, he obeyed. He was reflecting the light of the mercy and grace of God. But when we read about Noah in Genesis 9:21, it says, “He drank of the wine and became drunk and lay uncovered in his tent.” God gives us a quick glance through the looking glass. We can see the filth, even inside one as righteous as Noah.

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

And we all know the story of Abraham. Righteous and faithful father of God’s chosen nation – Israel. Yet we are told that when he and his wife went into Egypt, he stretched the truth a bit and only revealed that Sarah was his sister (he withheld the part about her also being his wife). He was nervous that the leaders would kill him in order to claim Sarah as part of the harem. God showed us that Abraham struggled to trust God.

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.


Now in the New Testament, after Jesus, one of the most memorable persons is Paul. I mean, he wrote (with the inspiration of the Holy Spirit) more than half the books of the New Testament. When Paul spoke, people listened and souls were saved. Not only did he speak with the authority of God, but he endured countless beatings, stoning, imprisonments, scourges and persecution; all for the name of Christ. But we also remember who Paul used to be. Saul, a Pharisee and a persecutor of Christians. He is said to be the person holding the robes while the other Jews stoned Stephen to death. Also in Romans 7, Paul has a long discourse about an unnamed sin that he battles as he is radically living for Christ (post-conversion). So we also see that Paul has struggles with sin.

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

God made the lives of these, and many more persons in the Bible transparent so that we could relate to them. If we did not have the examples of the sin in their lives, then we would think their lives were out of reach. That they were somehow more holy or God's chosen superheroes. But that is not the case. We see they struggle in some of the same ways that we struggle.

So back to Sunday morning. We all need to be more transparent. We should worry less about what our external self looks like (Well, I mean to a degree people. You still need to shower and smell nice) and more about letting the glory of Christ be the beauty in our life. If we let the walls of pride and self-sufficiency down and share our struggles (past and present) with others, they will see the wretched sinners that we all are, the brighter the glory of Christ shines.

Can I get an Amen?

So now who will you share your testimony, struggles, sins and temptations with so you are able to encourage one another? You never know how sharing the way that God has rescued you from your sin can impact someone else. They may be in the middle of the same minefield looking for a Savior.



This post was linked up at:

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2 comments:

  1. Hello! So nice to *meet* you. Thank you for linking up with us. :)

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  2. "White-washed sepulchres": that's the term Jesus used when referring to the Pharisees who were guilty of dirtying the insides of their cup. Great post! I'm glad you linked up...I might not have found you otherwise! I'll be back...

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