I heard a song on the radio this morning that frustrated me. It said, “Check your shame at the door/ you don’t need it anymore/ You’re in the Father’s house.” I think those are the lyrics.
Right after I heard those lyrics, I got this picture of someone checking a coat before they came into church and getting a number so they could come back and get it after they were done with service. And another picture of a person taking off shame, sin, fear, whatever and leaving it outside like a dog they were going to come back for. “Okay, you sit and I’ll be back later.” Seriously? That’s not what God wants us to do!!!
Don’t check your shame at the door, or leave your stuff outside. Things you have issue with: offense, shame, fear, sin, anger, hopelessness, anxiety, whatever it may be for you, bring it in to the Father’s house. We’ve all got “stuff/baggage.” He wants it. Go through your heart and let Him lead you in cleaning up and cleaning out all that. Bring it in to His house and lay it down at the altar as a sacrifice in obedience.
“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”Ephesians 4:22-24
As soon as you bring those old things, those former ways to the altar and leave them there, He completely consumes them by fire. You can’t go through your “clothes (disobedience, fear, anxiety, pride, etc.) and say, “Oh, I want to keep this one. It has sentimental value”, or, “I want to keep this memory – it reminds me of what I went through”, or, “I’ll just leave this one outside and get it later.” As said in my last post, we must go through our hearts and with the Spirit’s leading, empty ourselves. Not just for a moment, or while we’re in church, but for good. One thing I must warn (and I take very seriously to heart myself, because I’ve been guilty of it, too):
DO NOT PRETEND WITH GOD. DO NOT BE DECEIVED. GOD WILL NOT BE MOCKED.
You can’t take off your shame, your sin, your … whatever, and “worship Him,” smile for everyone like it’s all okay, and pretend that you and God are cool. You and God can’t “have an understanding.” I used to say that; I used to think so arrogantly and was so entitled (still am sometimes, and the Lord reminds me very quickly). I thought, oh, God knows where I’m at and we have an understanding. Puh-lease. You act that way and He will spit you out and humble you so quick you won’t know what hit you. Remember what happened to Lucifer/Satan?
- “Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to the earth; I made a spectacle of you before kings. By your many sins and dishonest trade you have desecrated your sanctuaries. So I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you, and I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the sight of all who were watching.” Ezekiel 28:18
- You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High. But you are brought down to the realm of the dead, to the depths of the pit.” Isaiah 14:13-15
- “He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.” Luke 10:18 (Jesus)
Whatever WE are dealing with, it is pride to keep it. It is sin to hold on to it. Let’s no longer hold back. Let’s really dig in and go through our hearts, willing to be obedient in laying on the altar anything He requires of us. You know what you’ve got; you know what you’re still dragging behind you. Let it go. Give it to the Savior. He’ll trade you for it – your junk for His incorruptible, never-ending treasure.
I know this was a little more harsh than my normal posts, but I feel the Lord calling us all to go deeper; to come closer. But we just can’t continue on the way we’ve been. It’s a glory to glory situation with Him; a take up your cross and follow Him call; a lifetime of laying ourselves on the altar until there’s nothing left but Him. What a glorious moment that will be when we are finally clear of our own humanity and sinful, corruptible nature!
Prayer: God forgive me for holding on to things You’ve asked me to give up. Forgive me for “checking” my baggage/my sin coat so to speak and pretending we are closer than we are. Forgive me for my arrogance, my entitlement, my sin. I don’t want to pretend for people. Teach me to be vulnerable and honest, and to lay down on the altar; to sacrifice my ego, my self-righteousness, my every fear and worry, all my anger and resentment, my hatred and vengeful spirit. I want to be like You and be closer to You than I have ever been. I know that will take work, but I’m willing to be diligent. How I love You, Lord. Help me to show it with my life. In Jesus’s name, Amen.