I still get pimples. Well, sometimes. It always varies based on what my diet is, but I'm far beyond the years where pimples would cover my face regularly. You know, I thought pimples would be a thing of the past once I passed puberty but I guess it's one of those things that just sticks with you no matter how old you get. Or maybe we grow out of it in our 50s? I don't know when or if we ever stop having pimples but what I do know is that they are annoying! Having a giant pimple on your face can be so embarassing. Worse yet, is when you get ready in the morning and leave the house pimple free only to have one develop over the course of the day. Anyone else have that happen? I've gone out for the day only to come back and realize that since I last checked in the mirror a white pimple has developed on a rather noticeable part of my face. Then my self-consciousness kicks in and I reflect back on every face-to-face conversation I've had throughout the day and wonder if it was as noticeable as I think it is, and if they were talking to me or talking at my pimple... I'm sure I can't be the only one who's thought this. Do they see me or do they see my pimple? What do people see when they look at me? What about my behaviour though? Because ultimately my goal is to have a character that reflects that of Christ. When people see me do they see Jesus as clear as a giant pimple on my face, or is His character more discreet in my life?
4 Hear, O Israel:
The Lord our God, the Lord is one.
5 Love the Lord your God with all your heart
and with all your soul and with all your strength.
6 These commandments that I give you today
are to be on your hearts.
Deuteronomy 6:4-6 (NIV)
I hope that's not as weird as an analogy as it sounds out loud. But you get where I'm going with this right? Are our actions accurately reflective of the Jesus we profess to serve? When we speak, interact with others, and go about our lives do people see us or do they see Jesus? Is it evident? Because our Christianity boils down to that really. It's not about beliefs or dogmas. It's not about what day is the right day of worship, or whether we eat veggie food or meat, our Christianity hangs on our ability to profess and declare Jesus in our lives, and for our actions to accurately reflect a life that has been transformed by the Spirit. Jesus abides in us and His Spirit revives our spirit to bring us back from the dead and liberate us from the chains of sin. God wants to write His commandments on your heart so that every action, thought and interaction may further demonstrate the gospel of love to those we interact and engage with. Christianity is about Jesus in our hearts and loving our neighbor and our God with all our heart, soul, and strength.
9 you have taken off your old self with its practices
10 and have put on the new self,
which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.
12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved,
clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone.
Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
14 And over all these virtues put on love,
which binds them all together in perfect unity.
15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts,
since as members of one body you were called to peace.
Colossians 3:9-15 (NIV)
God help us to better reflect your character. We pray that you would shine brightly through us and that your character be evidently demonstrated through our lives and through our actions. Write your commandments on our hearts, help us to love you and love those around us. I pray that we continually be transformed by your Spirit in our lives and that the peace of Christ rule our hearts. AMEN