As I study God’s Word, it’s becoming more glaring where we — even as Christians — have been missing it’s plot. We’ve held on to the habit of interpreting His Word based off our own biases and where we’re at in life. And He has allowed it happen this way as part of His plan to reveal His truth of His Word to us.
I was raised a Christian, and while growing up, I had so many incorrect ideas about God and a lack of knowledge about His Word. Not sure if the former stemmed from the teachings I’d heard about Him, or the perceptions I’d made up in my head due to lack of understanding. I’m however a bit certain that these incorrect ideas had a lot to do with judging culture and the enemy’s attempt at pulling me away from God’s plan for me. Can you relate? No?
To judge is to form an opinion or conclusion about someone or something. Now can you relate?
Over the last couple of years and as God gives me the willingness to want to know Him on a deeper level, He’s been teaching me His Word and doing some amazing things in me on a daily basis. Some of which include unraveling me, showing me things about myself I’d forgotten or not realised, helping me unlearn something’s He allowed me learn — which I no longer consider unfortunate, but part of His plan —, just so I can learn afresh who He called me to be. This however, is not the post where I tell it all. Just know He is now King over my life and has taken His rightful place on the throne of my heart. Know that though fragile like a clay jar, He has made me His vessel.
Again this isn’t about me or about any other sinner that God is transforming in spirit and renewing in mind. This isn’t about any vessel He calls and chooses. This is about focusing on God and the truth of His Word. Sadly, many of us are fond of making it about us and about the vessel.
“Remember, our Message is not about ourselves; we’re proclaiming Jesus Christ, the Master. All we are is messengers, errand runners from Jesus for you. It started when God said, “Light up the darkness!” and our lives filled up with light as we saw and understood God in the face of Christ, all bright and beautiful. If you only look at us, you might well miss the brightness. We carry this precious Message around in the unadorned clay pots of our ordinary lives. That’s to prevent anyone from confusing God’s incomparable power with us. As it is, there’s not much chance of that. You know for yourselves that we’re not much to look at.”
2 Corinthians 4:5-7 MSG
Many of us use the vessel/messenger as a justification for not wanting to believe in and follow Christ. Many of us use the vessel as an excuse for our own shortcomings. Many of us who claim to be believers and followers of Christ do this as well, and dare I say on a deeper level. We judge the vessels. Before you say to yourself, “that’s not me”, and whether you believe or don’t believe in Jesus Christ and all He is about; if you can’t look past the tattooed vessel, see the light of God in them past their many piercings, past their hair sense, dress sense, queerness… if you can’t make it beyond a publicised scandal about said vessel, or hear what God is saying through them past your knowledge of their past, present or future shortcomings; that my dearly beloved, is you.
But it shouldn’t be, because we all have a past. Importantly, we have salvation through Jesus Christ, that’s available to all who believe which erases our past, justifies and redeems us through His grace; all at not cost to us… for free.
“There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.” — Romans 3:22-24 NIV
And that’s why God doesn’t require us to be qualified in the eyes of man before He deems us fit for His use. That’s why He can use a pastor as well as a prostitute. That’s why He can send His word or share His healing plan for the commander of an army stricken with leprosy through a servant girl. That’s why its the same Peter who denied Him that became the rock upon which the body of Christ is built. We’ve heard these stories, yet we’re blinded by our biases.
That’s all coming to an end. Because, God.
“Don’t forget that you Gentiles used to be outsiders. You were called “uncircumcised heathens” by the Jews, who were proud of their circumcision, even though it affected only their bodies and not their hearts.
In those days you were living apart from Christ. You were excluded from citizenship among the people of Israel, and you did not know the covenant promises God had made to them. You lived in this world without God and without hope.
But now you have been united with Christ Jesus. Once you were far away from God, but now you have been brought near to him through the blood of Christ. For Christ himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us.
He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations. He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new people from the two groups. Together as one body, Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of his death on the cross, and our hostility towards each other was put to death. He brought this Good News of peace to you Gentiles who were far away from him, and peace to the Jews who were near.
Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us.” — Ephesians 2:11-18 NLT
I can only imagine how it makes God feel — Not that He is subject to feelings — when we keep up with the wrong perspective of Him, with unrenewed minds and with hearts that don’t believe or accept the truth of His Word. I’m humbled each day I’m privileged to go into His Word and His Spirit sheds light on the truth of it to come alive in me, to come alive in so many Sons and Daughters around the world.
Its comforting to know that God is revealing Himself afresh. In His enduring mercy, He is giving a crash course revelation of Himself to the world. He is revealing mysteries He hid in His Word for so long to us all. He is pouring out His Spirit on everyone for His Glory. He has made us all Vessels for His glory.