Monday, November 4, 2013

Counters and Tables vs. Walls and Doors

I have been reminded in this season that our horizontal relationships need to be cleaned exceptionally more frequently than our vertical ones.  Unless someone pulls a crayon attack on your walls, I doubt you are scrubbing away, the way you clean your table after a meal or your desk at the end of the work day.  A failure to clean, will allow buildup of clutter and/or dust and crumbs on the horizontal spaces, but it rarely builds on the walls without a conscious deliberate work of defilement. 

We had three strategically placed tiny green x's right by our kitchen door to the garage.  One on the light switch, one on the wall, and one on the molding.  It took someone rather intentional, to have a green crayon in hand, and look around at the clean beige walls, and letting a desire of making their mark become a reality, officially make his or her mark. My response is,  "Grrr.  Who did this!?"

And there's the powder room.  I realize we are fortunate to have a powder room, but unfortunately, there is a lightly penciled "A," ironically reminiscent of an anarchy symbol gracing the wall, right at eye level while sitting and doing your business.  The walls do not, in of themselves, become dirty.  They take invasion, they are only dirtied by the encroaching spider spooling it's web or the passing sticky finger. 

I would venture to say that I am exceedingly grateful that our vertical surfaces reflect what I believe to be the relationship with God and man, in it's original design.  Peace beyond understanding without spoil or dust, until, an invasion came.  The invasion of the serpent into our lives, and our deceit drew us to spoil our gardens of eden and the original garden itself.  After thousands of generations and atonement made over and over through animal sacrifice and significant priests, to cleanse the relationship with God and man, over and over, there then came a great High Priest.  Through the great High Priest's sacrifice of His life, we are cleansed and seen in right standing with God.   The same power that raised Jesus from the dead is the same power that lives in us, as walking temples of the Holy Spirit.  Take heart, the serpent's head has been crushed.  We are in good standing!

If we do not reject this truth, we will always be in right standing with God, because of the price paid on the cross, and the power in the resurrection.  But I can easily walk around with a little crayon in my mind, and start drawing things that would deceive me into thinking that this peace and right-standing is not true.  I can easily begin to draw little pictures of what I would have, could have, and maybe will have control of here or there, if I act or accomplish a certain thing.  I am aware of these lies, and need to speak the truth to myself.  Although many things appear to need cleaning on the horizontal surfaces, knowing that I am in right-standing with my vertical relationship, I can be sure that my roof will not crumble.  When fully distracted by spoil within relationships with any fellow men or women, I can deceive myself into thinking that the vertical walls have crumbled, are filthy, or are not there.  Let's steer away from this deceit and draw our eye up, from floor to ceiling, rather than across.  

Thankfully, when our walls are clear and we are unspoiled before the eyes of God, we have a constant help to heal and restore, bless and be patient with the people around us.  It takes our effort, and you may think it is our effort that put us in right standing.  It is not.  It takes our effort to remind ourselves that we ARE in right standing.  The work of erasing crayon and anarchy symbols has already been done, and no walls were damaged in the process.  

Can you encourage your soul today, speak truth and let go of your green crayon?  I will work at it also. There is an excerpt from lamentations that is helpful, when your counters are "crumbling" and you think it's your walls, 

my soul is bereft of peace;
I have forgotten what happiness is;
so I say, “My endurance has perished;
so has my hope from the Lord.”

Remember my affliction and my wanderings,
the wormwood and the gall!
My soul continually remembers it
and is bowed down within me.

But this I call to mind,
and therefore I have hope:
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.” (Lamentations 3:17-24, ESV)

Can we get away from our soul remembering all of our affliction, the wormwood, the clutter, the hurtful things people have said? I love the "but" 2/3 of the way through the excerpt from Lamentations. Call truth to mind, and in turn, your soul will respond well.  You will be in peace mentally, and reminded that you already are in peace with the most important relationship you have, your very own Creator.