Sunday morning, I attended church for the first time in over month. It was much needed. It was also the first time my senior pastor had spoken in a few months, so I was geeked. What I didn’t expect was to gain even more respect for him.
Since he hadn’t preached in quite a while, I was looking forward to a soul stirring message from God. Alas, it wasn’t to be. What I, and the other parishioners got was an open letter. One where my pastor opened up about why he had been MIA, the valley experience he had, and where God had him in this season of his life.
He acknowledged where he had fallen short in his marriage, as a father, and in the ministry. He mentioned how God showed him that his ambition had been channeled the wrong way. What stuck out most however, was him telling the congregation that he had been wrong about certain things. No doubt it was humbling. Not just because he is a pastor, but also a man.
In being so open, his moment of revelation was a catalyst for me, and hopefully others, to be “real”.
The only way to get to the place where God really wants us to be is to be real. We’ve got to be willing to strip away the layers of BS and knock down the walls in our life. Our ability to be open is also our chance to see the real us. We have a tendency to get wrapped up in issues, situations, and roles. Then, when we’ve reached our wits end, we don’t recognize ourselves. There are so many layers of *stuff* on top of who we really are that we wonder if we’ll ever see “us” again.
God knows who we are at our core (He made us), but He’ll only reveal this when we take the time to look. He’ll provide us with the necessary time, energy and strength to start the process. Our free will allows us to either keep digging, or to give up. But, it can be a rewarding, if not, painful endeavor.
The pain comes from peeling back the layers of stuff that’s covering us. It takes time to amass the various layers, so it’s going to take time to remove them. As they come off, God will reveal a little bit more of us. As He reveals, we get a chance to become reacquainted with ourselves. An added benefit of getting reacquainted is that hopefully, we start seeing ourselves, the way God does.
The more that gets stripped away, the less covering we have, until it’s just us. When we reach this place, we reach a new level transparency. Our entire being is laid bare before God. We’re in our most vulnerable state at this point. We’re also at a point where we can’t do anything but rely on God to cover us.
It’s in this covering where God will reveal things to us. His promise to the Israelites will be revealed for our understanding. However, we have to be willing to a) be receptive to Him and b)trust that He knows what’s best for us. When we reach these points, we’ll be on our way to submitting to God’s will, and truly letting the Lord be Lord of our lives.
Do you find yourself struggling to know who you are? Do you believe that when we give God control of our lives, things tend to work out for the best, or the worst?