Thursday, June 28, 2012

Hide-and-Seek: Grace For the Good Girl Week 4


When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden.  But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”  ~ Genesis 3:6-9
     Adam and Eve mistakenly thought that they could hide their nakedness and shame behind a couple of fig leaves.  Even as a child I guessed that God would notice something wasn’t quite right.  There wouldn’t be any fooling Him no matter how pretty those fig leaves may have looked.
     People still hide behind things as insubstantial as fig leaves today.  We try to make those fig leaves distractingly large and attractive.  Some of us cover ourselves with being “nice.”   We think if we appear good, good to God and those around us, no one will ever know our shame.  In truth, I am far more like the self righteous older brother than the prodigal son.
     We are trained to “be good” all of our lives.  There are rewards. We are given gold stars at school and more money for good performance at work.  Santa brings presents to the good little boys and girls.  We forget that Christmas isn’t for those of us who can meet some standard of goodness.  Christmas is for those of us who can’t.
     Jesus welcomed the sinners, the tax collectors, the adulterers, the broken.  The people who knew they needed a savior.  Jesus restored their wrecked lives with love and compassion.  The ones Jesus had difficulty with were the religious people, the good people, the people like me.
     But behind my fig leaves and before God I am broken, sinful and naked.  I am not okay.  I certainly am not good.  I am simply a sinner saved by grace.  It is the work Jesus completed on the cross that saves me.  It is a gift.  And I know it.
     We sing this song in church:
     How deep the Father’s love for us.
     How vast beyond all measure.
     That He would give His only Son
     To make a wretch His treasure
     I will not boast in anything.
     No gifts, no powers, no wisdom
     But I will boast in Jesus Christ
     His death and resurrection
     Why should I gain from His reward?
     I cannot give an answer
     But this I know with all my heart
     His wounds have paid my ransom ~ Stuart Townsend
     There is grace upon grace for every sinner.
 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. ~ Colossians 3:2-3
     Where are you hiding?


Linking:  Blessed and Be Blessed
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