You know, I recently looked at Jesus’ parable on hiding your light under a bushel in Matthew 5. I believe it is so much more than concealing just one’s talents or knowledge of the Gospel. I would like to relate it to what I have been blogging about over the last several weeks. So how much does it relate to befriending self?
I said in a recent podcast, “I wonder if the bushel is not just a cap on what we will accept of Christ’s life and light—that the bushel is literally a cap, a limitation, that I place over His light coming from out of me.” I believe that when we prevent Christ’s light-life from being all that He would want to be in us, we are hiding HIS light under OUR bushel.
When I prevent Christ the full right of access to my life, then I cover Light that wants to shine. Now why in the world would I do this? What reason could there be to possibly prevent Light’s shine? Because of my concepts, labels and opinions of my self. Foolishness I know, but boy, have I done it.
All my belly button gazing and navel excavations really don’t help my cause. I surface from the depths with only self-imposed labels and self-consumed attitudes that usually falsely estimate my worth, value and true condition.
The Spirit of the Living God is the only being that can correctly surmise my true heart condition. Sure, passersby can judge or brand me with a mark, but only the Spirit, however He wishes to come, can truly define me. This is the job of the Spirit.
And when He comes, He will convict and convince the world and bring demonstration to it about sin and about righteousness (uprightness of heart and right standing with God) and about judgment:
He tells me where I am, who I am and where I am not. It is the Spirit’s position to lead me into all truth, including about myself.
So where I have wrongly walked in the past is in allowing my opinions of my own self to limit Christ’s ability to shine forth and glorify His Father. I have placed the lid on the LIFE of Christ, because it was brighter than I judged my self. Again, crazy, right? Of course, Christ will always shine far beyond me. But where this gets into serious sin is when I limit, prevent, STOP the shine because I don’t think I am worthy!
God help me. My boxes, labels, or opinions about self are simple restrictions on Christ. I have the ability to diminish His Light flow from within me. All I have to do is cap it beneath the dark cloak of opinion.
Part of befriending self is the willingness to release yourself into the hands of God to mold you. It is being at peace in the place where you are and a surrender to go where He leads. God is God and I am not, and when I get out of His chair, I will enter the peace that allowing His Lordship rewards. Then I am resting in rather than striving against His handy work. And in this place of joy, His Light shines unhindered.
So the choice on the table is to abandon my list of labels, throw off my constraining opinions and let Him Father me, define me, and Shine as He wills through me.
You scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
Even before there is a word on my tongue,
Behold, O Lord, You know it all.
You have enclosed me behind and before,
And laid Your hand upon me.
Yes, I love that…letting Him ‘define’ me…since after all He is the only ONE intimately acquainted with ALL my ways…PS 139…my favorite Psalm…I love the next verse…especailly! 6.Such knowledge (Of HIs constant care)is too wonderful for me…it is too high I cannot attain to it…He searches and KNOWS us…intimately…this is so amazing to me….I stand in AWE is all I can do …especially with what He has been showing me lately, of just HOW much He IS and HAS been there all along my lifes journey…After all I am literally just a grain of sand….and He is making me into… Read more »
Great, John. “. .. being at peace in the place where you are” seems to be a challenge for me. I only tend to see those having the fullness of Christ’s Life as those at Shulamite, their faithful followers and a few other anointed preachers / teachers. But 1 John tells me *I* (though the noun in scripture is plural) have an anointing. So, if I’m to believe that, I better stop the whine and let the Holy Spirit cause Jesus, as LORD, to shine. In the flesh, when I compare (which is sin), I despair; that’s why I’m enjoying… Read more »
To know the NEW I release the OLD. The OLD is my works. The OLD, as it relates to God, is manifested in religion. “I can please God this way or this other way.” (Last chapters of the letter to Galatians links amazingly the religion of our dead works and the fruits of flesh!) The power of Jesus can get me out of the OLD works. and as I want to embraze the New Kingdom, and be embrazed by Him. So… what do I do? Precisely what I so dislike: Be a POOR and a BEGGAR! “Blessed are the poor… Read more »
The OLD is our huge faith in our strange fires.
Going on with John’s words and message:
It doesn’t matter whether the OLD labels are against myself or they work promoting myself.
They work both ways, and in both ways they kill! It is the same exact coin.