Friday, March 07, 2008

Deanna plays the drums at a rooftop celebration in Africa (top). Whitney, Deanna and some of our team dance a Ha'wash, as taught to us by the locals.

One of my family came to me recently with a pair of clean pants on. They were frustrated that
one of the legs was sporting a spot. This particular spot had been treated, and then mysteriously, grown larger in the wash.
I don't profess to be an expert, but I am pretty sure that is the opposite of what is supposed to happen.
She was frustrated and concerned as to whether or not her pants were ruined. To be honest, I trusted her that there was a spot, but I could not make it out from about three feet away. I told her it was "no big deal," and to go ahead and wear them. She did.
To my knowledge, none of the children she works with (two of my three girls work with children so you are still trying to guess which one) threw a penalty flag and called her out for having such a stain.
I was thinking... I know I tend to take ordinary, even silly things in life and turn them into something... about how often we allow the world to infiltrate our lives and leave a mark on us.
We know that when we give our hearts to Christ, He removes all sin and stains from us. We are clean, pure, new, and righteous because of Him. This is fact.
However, many of us walk around bearing scars from who we were. The enemy seeks to make sure we don't forget. Though our Savior has forgotten our past, we never forget. Sometimes we remember too much. We struggle to disassociate ourselves from who we were. In effect, we sometimes walk in our old flesh.
The Word tells us in James 1:27 to "keep oneself unstained by the world."
Because we are new creations in Christ, we walk as unstained beings. We have His righteousness, His Holiness imputed to us. We can walk in confidence and detach ourselves from who we were.
None of us will ever forget the filth and vile ways we used to walk, but we are set free from those things and can bear witness for Him and what He has done in our lives.
Those stains, those scars that leave a mark on our bodies here, will not follow us to Heaven. Someone reminded me recently, that in Heaven, only Christ will bear scars.
Praise God, we are truly and completely set free, if we allow Him to perfect us, and then walk it out. Some of us need to release our attachments to the identities from our old selves, and allow others to see the New in us, the Jesus we love an serve.
We are no longer stained by this world, unless we invite it in anew. We must hold the world at bay.
He forgave our pasts... we need to forgive ourselves, and carry on.


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