SPAR Thoughts

SPAR Thoughts

Free To See Me

 I woke up this morning with an unusual image in my mind: a baby with hands full of snot.  The baby was examining this goo with no hesitations.  What would be repulsive to an adult is the everyday occurrence in the purity of a child.

Examination into my own failure indicates it no longer has power over me.

Ps 139 speaks of David not held captive by his failure and therefore able to examine it with inquisitiveness.  Verse 23 "Search me, O God, and know my heart!  Try me and know my thoughts! 24 And see if there be any grievous way in me".  

David is opening himself up to God's examination.  This is not a man without sin, this is a man who knows God's loving kindness.  

In Rom. 12:1 it says to "present yourself as a living sacrifice to God."  What brings us to the place of even considering the idea of giving ourselves over sacrificially to God?  It's the same thing that brought David to God for examination - the mercies of God.

When will we stop hiding?

The question was posed in SPAR: how can a man who's experienced the effects of sin played out against him as a child by his father not have a distorted view of God as Father and in turn struggle with his own way of being a father to his children?   More than anything else this question is connected to who God is. Hiding from our past may be revealed by acting out in our behavior and choices,  opening ourselves up to neurotic, protective thoughts, or other behaviors intended for escape, or to at least deaden the painful effects of living.  All of which, in large part, is connected to a distorted view of God - a view that David does not have in Ps. 139, nor does Paul throughout his New Testament writings.

1 Cor. 2:14 gives us a contrast between the natural person and the spiritual person.  The 'natural' is limited in their understanding, whereas the 'spiritual' judges all things. Why? Because of secret and hidden wisdom God has revealed to us through the Spirit.

Embracing the truth that God reveals to heal opens one's heart to God's examination. Through Christ there is forgiveness, acceptance, sonship, abundant life.  What? In Jn.10 Jesus speaks of a loving, protective shepherd, guiding, leading and giving rest to his sheep and contrasting that to a thief that steals, kills and destroys life of the sheep. In verse 10 Jesus says, "I have come that they may have life and have it abundantly."

When we embrace what the world offers as our source of happiness before we  embrace God as our source of fulfillment, happiness will be pursued and elude us. It's in the pursuit that choices, leading to shame and isolation, are formed.  Our choices, our ways, our freedom to utterly destroy our lives is the greatest evidence of God's love. Love is only love when there is a choice not to love.

The father that abuses his children, the teen that hides his or her inadequacies, the single person driven to express their sexuality in demeaning ways, all of the harmful displays of insecurity are not of God, nor did they originate with God.  It is God who demonstrates his love for us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.  His life for ours.

Now, in the embrace of God's mercy and unconditional acceptance I without hesitation open my life to be fully viewed by the only one who loves me enough to touch the "snot" of my humanity with an understanding that I have yet to understand, but trust.  It's in this trust I exam my failure as a 'child' with curiosity for better understanding and the freedom of forgiveness and redemption.  All the while knowing that at this time the best I will see is as through a glass dimly.  And that's OK  because in that place I live in gratitude and dependency on the One who knows me better than I know myself.  I no longer have to understand my past or be tormented by it, yet can embrace it knowing I can rest in God using my past in His way for His purpose.  Now I can offer myself to God as a living sacrifice, knowing that if He is asking me to be a living sacrifice then He has made me an acceptable sacrifice; holy and without blemish.

So, two foundational truths about God must be understood so that you will trust that God transcends evil and his love will transform you in the midst of the pain you've caused or the pain you've been a victim of.

1. God is sovereign.  He will never not be in control.
2. God uses everything in your life for your good and His glory.

In SPAR neither self-exalting nor self loathing is played out, rather men and women are better understanding their own humanity filtered through the truth of God, so that God, rather than Satan, is glorified in life!

No Comments