Good morning everyone and welcome to Saturday! I’m not sure about all of you but this has been a stressful week. At my job they have completed one round of layoffs and on Monday morning I find out if I am part of the second. Part of me is ok if I am because the severance package will be nice and I have been praying for a fresh start. Whether or not this is in God’s plan and timing, I guess will be determined in a couple of days.
In either case, I will do my best to find joy in the decision; these are unprecedented times and the one thing I am sure of is God’s plans are WAY better than mine.
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.
– Psalm 51:10
Its funny because when I sat down to write this message, I really had no idea what to write about. With so much going on, I could literally talk about thousands of relevant topics. But when I looked back at my verse of the day; it hit me as to exactly what God wanted me to talk about. (Usually this is when God has the biggest impact when I just let His Spirit guide me and stop trying to control it.)
Years ago, I was hit by a car as I darted across the street. Even from this early age of 13, the Evil One was trying to take me out. I won’t get into all the graphic details, but all things considered I fared pretty well. But one of the things that happened still sticks with me today and leads me to what I believe God wants me to share with you all.
So, I was unconscious for about 10 hours; any longer and the doctor said there could have been serious issues. But with God’s Grace I awoke and once I got my wits about me and what had happened, my arm REALLY hurt. I had quite a few injuries but this one in particular REALLY hurt. So when I gathered enough courage, I looked down and my forearm was basically completely exposed down to the bone. It was bloody, full of gravel, and was the worst pain I had ever felt. Then the fun part came….
The nurses came in with this peroxide stuff and what was essentially a scrub brush. I’m thinking, what are they going to do with that?? Well, they said, “we need to get out all the gravel and dirt so your arm doesn’t get infected. Then we can stitch you up”. I’m like, YOU COULDN’T HAVE DONE THIS WHILE I WAS UNCONSCIOUS?????
In any event, they did what they had to and all was well. I do have a reason for telling you this story and here it goes. See the Scripture above is the Psalmist asking God to create a new heart and a new spirit within him. For those of us that are disciples of Jesus Christ, we should be asking the same thing. The thing is though, be careful what you ask for because just like my how my arm needed to be cleaned out to avoid infection, when God goes to clean out your heart, it also will cause some pain.
Things that you never realized will come to light as God uses His “scrub brush” to clean out your old heart and spirit. Just as the doctor was preparing my arm for healing, God is preparing your heart for not only healing but Heaven! Every time the doctor took a swipe at the opening in my forearm the pain was unbearable, but in the end, it saved my arm. In the same way, every “swipe” God takes at your old and wretched heart and spirit, it WILL cause you pain, but in the end, it will save your SOUL.
Yes you are a new Creation in Christ and by believing in Jesus Christ as your Savior, you have gained Eternal Life. But it doesn’t stop there! There isn’t some magic event that happens that make you perfect. From that point on God, if you let Him, will continue to purge that old, wretched heart, and replace it with a new pure one that is ready for your next life. (And makes the current one better as well)
May God bless each of you today and know this above all else; God loves you more than you can possibly imagine and as those of us that are parents understand, sometimes the best thing for His children is to allow some temporary pain to bring out lasting transformation that will make us better than ever before.
In Jesus’ name.