This morning as I cleaned for one of my families, I pondered life and what I have been learning. I mourned and perhaps whined just a little about how hard living outside of denial can be. As I thought, I began to jot down my thoughts. The first was, “Do I want to cover my sins with denial or with the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ?”
I am no theologian, but I wonder if it is fully possible to do both. When I am lying about who I am, can I truly give my whole heart to Him and ask Him to forgive all my sin? Do I really want to try to control the situation or would it be better to give it to God and allow Him to forgive and redeem it?
“The blood of Jesus, His Son, cleanses us from all sin.” I John 1:17
I continued to contemplate some of the ideas that have been presented to me at school. One of which is relocating to high-risk communities when doing ministry to them. In spite of every natural instinct of self-preservation for ourselves and our children, to lay it at the feet of Jesus and sacrifice safety for the sake of the growth of His Kingdom.
Last night, I practically begged someone to let me get off the transparency hook. “Please tell me I can beg off for the sake of my own healing emotions. Please tell me I can protect my heart as I heal. Does anyone really have to know?” It would have been more honest had I asked, “Please tell me I can protect my pride as I heal.”
This morning as I swept, it occurred to me maybe my stepping out of my self-protective instincts is being transparent at Celebrate Recovery and in my church. Self protection says, “Don’t let people know. They will use it against you. This does not feel good right now. Don’t do it. Who is ever going to publish your writing for children when you have a publicly speak about your struggle with porn. Do something else, but don’t do this.”
I wondered as I swept if maybe God was not asking me to move to a dangerous place physically for the sake of His Kingdom, but maybe He was asking me to sacrifice other natural instincts. Maybe He was asking me to give up my mask for Him. I like my mask. We all like our masks. Maybe God is asking me to give it to Him because it does not actually protect me; it only hides me.
As I folded the laundry, I wondered why I didn’t feel ready for this step. I wanted to wait. Why was it so hard? Why did the thought of being transparent outside of my small group seem so humiliating? Why could not it just seem humbling. Why not just wait until it was easier? Until it felt better?
And I thought what I have thought at other times. If I wait for it to be easy to take up my cross and follow Jesus, I will never take the next step on the journey. It is a cross. It is not going to feel easy. It is going hurt. There will be pain. Death comes with pain. God has asked me to die to my flesh.
Those were my thoughts this morning. This afternoon, I just want more of Him. I want intimacy with Him, so I have the courage to take the next step carrying my cross because He was nailed to His cross for me. The blood of the Lord Jesus Christ cleanses me from all sin. Amen.
“No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.” – John 13:8
How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God! – Hebrews 9:14
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. – I John 1:7