Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Not A Spot Or Wrinkle

I was thinking while looking at my arm and then the other, I saw the marks over the years from baking mishaps and grease popping from the pan and onto my wrist. Of course, I didn't expect these things to happen or why else would I cook? Yet the marks are there for what? As reminders to what not to do? Does it shape my personality or make me a better Christian?  Does it assist in me teaching other people what not to do or couldn't I have remembered these things without the marks reminding me? And how does God see these marks? Do they serve as signs of a good and faithful servant or someone who is diligent in their tasks? Or are they marks for a lack of faith because He expects a body thats without spot or wrinkle (Ephesians 5:25-29 KJV)?

As you can see without knowing what the Word says about the matter, error can have a field day in the mind, a religious attitude can take over, and passing judgement on others completely spoils the faith and now there is a huge problem with your relationship with God. I have this confession where I use righteousness scriptures because of what Jesus to His disciples in using the Lord's prayer. In those verses, the more I have said the them, the more I believe what it is written - well, because faith comes by hearing and hearing. My daughter works at a children's center and when she comes to visit with my grand daughter, they are comfortable in my home. I don't expect anything less then that; yet in so doing, they take off their outer garments and place them right where they sit, they continue to visit, take their belongings when they leave and we give each other hugs and kisses. Those out garments were more then likely at a myriad of places, especially when she is working at a children's center. The next after noon, I noticed a mark on my wrist that began to itch. It didn't catch my attention until I noticed it getting red and started to form a raised ring. Having been a director in a children's center and raising five children myself, I knew what it was. I began to pray and speak the Word over my body especially my skin. I started to get angry every time I looked at the mark left behind. The next time she visited and we went through the routine of hugs and kisses, hours later I saw the white in one eye have a slight different color. I really didn't think anything of it other then eye strain. The next morning when I could sense more then the usual eye matter we wipe from our eyes in the morning, I went to the mirror and saw a more clear distinction in color. I got angry again, knowing what the Word says and how dare there be any weapon formed against me. The thoughts of going to the convenient store to get some medication and talking to my daughter about disinfecting her home and their outer garments were coming like a flood. Odd that scripture wasn't coming to mind to detour the flood in a different direction. When does action of practicality take precedence over the Word of God? Never.

I recall in the Word after Jesus had been studying in the temple for so many years before He began His ministry. He was found talking to the elders of the church when His parents were looking for Him. His answer to them when He saw the concern was, "I am about My Father's business." All of that time from the age of 12 and so forth, He studied, He prayed, and then He was equipped to go and teach the gospel all over the land (Luke 2: 42-52 KJV). There was a time when He came to the temple and there was a man there with a table selling goods (Luke 19: 45-47 KJV). Business is seeing where the majority of people gravitate and that's where the selling begins. But the Word  tells us not to try to make an income from the righteous. When going to church the intention and mind set is one way. To make a profit from people that have their minds set on righteousness is wicked. Nonprofit organizations are created from this principle. Jesus showed this in getting angry and tipping the table with all of the wares being sold in the temple. Why wasn't Jesus charged for doing this? I believe because they knew it was wrong and if someone doesn't stand against it, then it is more readily accepted. Selah.

What I find the most fascinating about the Word is the levels of mystery that is in it and can only be found by search and research in Christ.With Jesus tipping over the table in anger, He showed us all three things:
1. We are the temple of God and greater is He than is in the believer then he that is in the world. When having that verse on the inside of you and believing that Jesus is Lord, anything foreign coming against the temple has no right or business being there. Sickness and disease is a foreign matter coming against the body. We have every right in getting angry and using what means we have to rid ourselves from it.

2. How can something come in the temple that was not invited to do so? Could it ever be a test and should we be accepting of it? We know when the usual season for the flu comes. Do we guard ourselves with the Word and whatever other means that is put on our hearts to use or are we casual about the matter because we know it is coming and inevitable to catch no matter what you do? How many people by passed that man selling goods in the temple before Jesus came?

3. When Jesus showed up to do what He did, there was never another passage about the matter ever returning. That man didn't come back to sell his wares ever again in the temple.

I have written about this before with my children. Whenever they got a cold, I knew what to do to guard against those common ailments. They dressed well in all seasons. They ate hot meals and had plenty of vitamins and minerals to keep their bodies strong. I spoke good things over them in their presence so they wouldn't have low self esteem and no one else could tell them different for them to think lower of themselves. I knew that once low self esteem tries to get a strong hold, health was the next factor. But above all else, I made it a regular practice to pray over them. They knew better not to pretend about being sick to miss out on school or for avoiding the foolishness of other children being intimidating. They knew they could come to me about what ever the matter was. When they did have the symptoms a cold coming about or some other ailment, I didn't coddle it with snuggling up to it and feeding it in bed. My children had those looks that would cause a mother to say, "oooh what's the matter with my baby?" But I had to put those feelings aside. Something had decided to come against my child and this is war. It only took a few hours for my children to be delivered and not the standard days  that some people think. Funny, that these pitiful attacks were usually towards the end of the week.

When we go to a dry cleaner, we have our laundry bundle up and ready to dump it on the counter to have those garments services. Sometimes there are stains that we give particular attention to tell the person for him/her to be aware in cleaning the garment. There is a specific time and date whether it is being told to the customer or the customer is telling the counter person. When picking up the garment, most of us will take special care in looking for those particular stains that was made mention of. If the stain is still there or even a small residual of it, there is a complaint made and an explanation is given as to why the stain couldn't be taken out or the garment is taken back for more treatment. Would God then do less then that? He is looking for a particular church for His Son. It is to be without spot or wrinkle. There are no excuses for doing this or that. It is why we are scrutinized with tests and trials while here on earth. With Jesus being the judge and defense, does that mean we can sit there and do nothing? Of course not. How do we live? Do we put all of our trust in Him so He can guide our path (Proverbs 3:6 KJV)? How do we do this without studying the manual of life that He has given (Joshua 1:8 NIV)? How do we do this without accepting the Holy Spirit that He has given (John 14:25-27 KJV)? How do we do this without living the abundant life that He has given (John 10:9-11 KJV)? What can one say when standing before Him in that day expecting to be accepted presenting a body in the state that it is in (Romans 12:1-3 KJV)?

A special note: What if all that you have to work with is a good looking face and body? Should you do with all you can to make your face and body marketable to make an income? Would you believe that as being superficial? Would you believe someone else telling you that? Would you then not do anything when it is all you have an interest in? What if you had other gifts and including looks. Would you then enhance all of the other gifts and let your looks go by the way side? There is a scripture that can be used for people like you. It isn't at all what you might think, but it is much to think about (Matthew 25:29 KJV).

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