Wednesday, May 4, 2011

I am Covered

I am covered.

I was watching a video of Beth Moore speaking with a group of women about “5 things to be happy about”. One point that she made that hit home with me was “I am covered.” The explanation behind it was that I am covered by God….but only after I lay myself bare to Him. When we come to God and admit to our sin specifically, then He can cover that specific sin. Moore says, “God will not cover what we cover, he can only cover what we uncover.” Notice I did not say admit to the Pastor, Bishop, Pope or church clergy…or other family in Christ. I said God. We try to half-repent, repenting to only the obvious things that others can see, but we keep the roots covered, like repenting of the fruit our trees bear will kill the root issues. Hmm. Now what sense does that make? But that is for later discussion.

Back to going bare before God…We try to hold on to a little bit of sin thinking and saying in our heart to God, “you get that big, ugly sin over there that makes me look bad, I can handle this little bit over here. I know you taught me to come to you for help instead of doing it myself, but God, I have grown in my walk and I think I can handle this lil’ bit of sin.” We have to come to God and specifically say what we are sorry for. We already know the feeling of freedom in God for repenting of our sins and receiving Him as Lord of our lives (if we are saved) but why do we not want that same feeling when it comes to repenting for just ONE sin in particular? It is like I have talked about with friends, when we apologize for something it does not make sense for us to apologize for how someone else feels in a situation or how I feel (even more self-centered). It only makes sense for me to apologize for what my part was in the issue, same thing when we come to God, we have to apologize specifically for what we did or did not do. If we do not then the apology means nothing to the person who needs to hear it…including God. He knows when we are bluffing on our apologies to Him any day but I would think He is especially concerned just before we take communion. I can think back in my teens and young 20’s when I may have not been involved in the most wholesome leisure activities and I would ask God for forgiveness but in my heart I was not really trying to do the right thing. I was trying to do what I wanted…why? ‘Cause I was selfish and not interested in truly doing God’s will. I had to get to the point where I had to come to God and lay my heart out…admit to my selfishness, my envy, my hate (Gasp? Me? Hate someone? Yes…but I had a long history of learning how to craft the “slap on smile”). But the greatest joy was the feeling that even in my much less than perfect being, God was the best cure, solution, comfort, redeemer, Savior, provider…..and oh how I could go on… God lets us know that when we surrender our lives to him complete with all the unmentionable sins that we have committed and tried to sweep under the rug, He gladly covers them with the blood of Jesus. God I am sorry….mmmmmm. God, I am sorry for lying to my parents about where I went out to last weekend…covered. God I am sorry…..hmph. God, I am sorry for not doing as the Holy Spirit prompted me when____.....covered. Point is, we can try to be general with God like we are with people, but people are not the ones who cover us with sinless blood and stand in for us to the Father and save us from Hell.

Okay, now back to half-repenting for the things that we know we need to rid ourselves of but we try to repent of the fruit and not deal with the root cause. I heard something in a bible study a few weeks ago that made so much sense to me…”be careful of the seeds you plant because in time they will bear fruit.” No matter what the seeds are: anger, joy, love, hate, thankfulness, regret, etc. THEY WILL BEAR FRUIT. I find it so funny (yes, even sometimes at my own expense) that we are so stunned to see how our unwilling attitudes to help others will affect our kid’s attitudes to be selfless when they get older. Or to see how when we stay true to what God would have us do how it teaches them to stay with God’s directives no matter what the personal cost is, that God’s way is always more beneficial. So WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY…..WHHHHHHHHHHHHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY do we act like the “lil bits” of sin that we hold on to will not blossom into some huge stubborn ROSE bush with thorns? I say rose bush because: 1. Sin is always attractive, how do you think Satan gets us to sin? The appearance of sin is NEVER ugly…. 2. It will not be like a tree that grows straight up for the most part, one huge trunk with a few branches that may break the main growth pattern. It will have at least 3 or 4 branches or vines that break off, each having their own bunch of roses and thorns. Yes, there may be a luscious rose that beautifully peeks out its head and shows that yes, something attractive comes out of the bush, but do not forget about trying to prune that bush, you will have your own set of finger pricks to deal with. Seriously, we figure we will not do stuff like gamble or watch porn (yes I said it), but we will spend a good $30 on scratch offs or watch shows that have people wearing less clothes than infants and say, “but they have clothes on” or we will say, “but the main parts are covered”. Okay, maybe none of us have struggled with that. Here is another one that for me has ALWAYS been a struggle…”I am not listening to the words, so it is okay to listen to the music.” The bad part is that is a dangerous one. What you listen to, you put in your spirit, and what you put in your spirit comes out in your actions, beliefs, words, etc. I can remember hearing songs that my parents would hear and frown on (and most assuredly speak out against—repeatedly) and I would say “well it is only the instrumental” or “I am not listening to it for the words” but what good does saying that do if I KNOW the words?

Seeing from these examples, we have to watch what we allow into our lives, it may be activities, issues or people. Whatever or whoever those things may be we need to apologize for those things to God (and to those affected). It never seems like a huge deal to us, but it is a huge deal to God when He is waiting to forgive us for the sins that we have committed and cover us. We think that wearing the big girl or big boy pants for 0.2 seconds and getting through a time of trial classifies us to somehow trumping God’s decision and we self-medicate ourselves with our pride and self-righteousness. One last thing that Moore said that was a stick pin was that until we fully accept and embody our forgiveness in Christ we will continue to fall into some form of the sins we struggle with. When we cannot fully accept that God makes us whole and He forgives us and accepts us into a life of righteousness we will continue to struggle and relapse. So what do we need to do? LET IT ALL OUT……TO GOD….YOU WILL NOT BE SORRY……JUST COVERED.