One of my devotionals today took me to the book of James, for a gentle reminder that when we are saved it is true, it is entirely by grace, our works can never save us, only the power of the precious shed blood of Christ can wash us clean of all our vile filthiness. Jesus truly is the only way, praise God for that. When we are saved by Jesus we know it, there is a change wrought in us immediately as our sinful longings and desires are washed away. When we give our selves to Christ we are changed, we begin to desire new things like the Word of the Father, the Bible. We begin to long to spend time in the Word, drawing nearer to God with every word we read, pondering them in our hearts all the joyous news, the promises, securities, hope and love found within the pages of the most amazing story ever told. The story of Jesus, who saved our souls.
But that beautiful adventure, love story has another purpose – one that’s a little less fun sometimes, a little more convicting than entertaining. The Word reveals to us our true selves. It reveals the good the bad and the ugly about us, much like a mirror on a morning when you’ve been up for a few days with a sick little one and sleep has come in the form of chicken neck head bob cat naps rocking your precious baby – when you’ve long since decided that puke is your new color and showers are just a distant memory. It’s that kinda honest. Sometimes brutal, but sometimes beautiful. Because in the midst of all the life, muck, and filth there is the new you, the new creature that is just below the grime just like that momma’s smile lights up her exhausted face and makes it shine brilliantly when that sweet bundle of love in her weary arms finally looks up and the watery feverish eyes have cleared, the flushed cheeks are a rosy pink, and ah, there it is the first smile in days. That’s the most beautiful smile a momma’s ever and the smile that crosses her face is the most beautiful as well. That’s how God seems us, he sees our good before we are saved but it is as if it is in a muddy mirror, it’s obscured, covered. But once we repent and plead with Jesus to be accepted by Him, cleansed by Him (of course we must ask Him to accept the gift He bears, He is a gentleman and will never force it upon us!) then the picture God sees begins to clear, all the filth and sin obscuring our true selves, the self He created us to be, fades away just like the weariness and worry on that Momma’s face when she finally gets a much needed clean up. The Word lets us see ourselves as God sees us, just like looking in a mirror and if we don’t like what we’re seeing then maybe we need to spend more time with the Father and Son and less time in the world because we have some work to do. It’s why I spend hours in study a day, I long to bring honor and glory to the Father with my life, to share with others the love of the Son and His incredible gift of love and grace.
Wherefore putting away all filthiness and overflowing of wickedness, receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deluding your own selves. For if any one is a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a mirror: for he beholdeth himself, and goeth away, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But he that looketh into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and so continueth, being not a hearer that forgetteth, but a doer that worketh, this man shall be blessed in his doing. James 1:21-25
As always my beloved brothers and sisters in Christ may the Father bless and keep you.