Wednesday, March 24, 2010

When God shows you your heart

God has the most unpleasant way of showing me what is really in my heart. I am so glad that He does it, but it is usually pretty disconcerting. We think we have come so far, which I definitely have, but lest I get proud God is so faithful to show me how far I still have to go.

This morning, as I ran, there was a knock on the door. It was pretty early, 830ish. I felt, at first, a little annoyed thinking it must be Ally needing in after locking her keys in the car. First, for those that do not know, the house I recently moved into used to be a drug house. Apparently a lot of Chrystal Methamphetamine came out of this house. The narcotics officers came to see the first week I was here. They did not realize that the house had been vacated and was now inhabited by a family that did not sell or even do drugs. We have only had knocks on our door twice so far that were for the previous tenants. I was kind of expecting a lot more of that.

Any way, on with my story. As I opened the door I say a youngish girl, with pretty rotten teeth (clue number one that you are dealing with Meth, for real). She asked for Tracy, the lady I have already been informed was one of the main players in this little Meth drama.

I, haughtily stated, "They don't live here any more, we do."

To which she replied, "Oh. I love your hair!"

I responded, "Thanks, there are no more drugs here and no more drugs dealers."

"Oh," she said and walked off.

I was so proud of myself and feeling quite amused with my quit witted response. I went to inform my husband with a grin on my face. Then I got back on my treadmill, where as most everyone who follows this blog knows I run and pray every morning for longer than I really want to admit to most people b/c I know they think I am crazy when they here how long I actually run every day. I enjoyed my amusement of myself for about 60 seconds on my treadmill before God started gently talking to me about what I had just done.

I missed last Sundays church service b/c I was sick as was the whole family. I like to keep up with the sermons b/c Mark (our teaching pastor) is spending this year going methodically through I Corinthians. I didn't want to miss out. So I listened to that sermon last night before I went to bed allowing for God to pull from what I had listened to Mark teach last night. I won't go into the whole sermon, but it was over 2 verses. The main thing God prodded me with was, "We are the temple of the Holy Spirit and He inhabits us like He once inhabited the physical temple in the Old Testament."

So God says to me, "Are you not the Temple of the Holy Spirit?" "Do I not inhabit your very being?" "Was there not someone just standing before you that needs me?" "My Spirit dwells in you to give you power and to love people." This girl is obviously held captive by a very harsh slave driver. I have been addicted to Meth; it is relentless; it is like being chained up in a darkness that there is not escape from. This poor girl with rotten teeth is chained to the gates of hell with chains that she had no idea would hold her so tightly. She was deceived at some point into willing putting her hands into the shackles that now hold her in an hopeless grasp, a dark, hopeless, painful grasp. I stood before her with the answer to all the longings in her heart, with the power to set her free. The only thing I lacked was the compassion to reach into her darkness, take her hand and lead her into the light. I lacked the heart to care about someone God brought onto my porch. "Jesus had compassion" is written so many times in the new testament. Jesus dwells in me and He had compassion on me or I wouldn't be here. Because He had compassion on me, I am now the Temple of the Holy Spirit. I have been pondering, chewing on, and trying to digest the idea of taking up my cross daily. I cry out to God every day to make me a lover and servant of people, to help me take up my cross and here stood before me the opportunity to take up my cross and act like Jesus and I missed it. I don't even know her name. I didn't even ask her name. My ego, my pride, the ugly, ugly part of my heart overlooked her need. Now, I may not have been able to make a difference in her life, but I will never know b/c I didn't even try. How different could that encounter have been if I had just reached out? How might things have turned out if I had instead said, "Tracy doesn't live here anymore, but I do. What is you name? I would like to pray for you. Do you know Jesus?" I will never know if possibly she was desperate enough this morning to hear that someone loves her so much that He died so He could redeem her, walk with her and make her the Temple of the Holy Spirit.

Oh my God, have mercy on me, have mercy on all of us. Forgive us for not having a heart of compassion and eyes to see the desperate states of so many around us. Help us to know that we have you dwelling in us and that you dwell in us not so we can walk around glad that we know you while the world around us goes to hell. Help us to remember that we hold the answers to all of life's problems, questions, and needs. Forgive us for taking for granted all that you have done in us and all that you have given us.

What really makes this horrible is I personally know what it is like to be chained up with those chains. Even in the midst of spending time with God in prayer, my first reaction was pride, arrogance, and lack of compassion. What an unpleasant realization to have to come to this morning.

I am so grateful that God knows our failings and our tendency to do the wrong thing. I am grateful that He knew that I would react in such a flippant insensitive manner. He will send another. As a matter of fact, I began to pray for her as soon as He had taken me to task. I prayed for Him to send godly, authentic, sincere individuals into her life to show her the way home. I prayed the he would life the veil off of her heart and give her eyes to see the truth and that He would not let the enemy blind her to the truth of the Gospel. I added her to my prayer list, "the girl with rotten teeth". He will send someone to her and He will be faithful to remind me to pray for her. I may not be able to be the one who takes her hand and leads her out of darkness (my loss, truly), but God, in His grace and mercy will allow me to participate in her life by praying for her. I have repented and so am no longer guilty of that sin, but I have learned a lesson; I have seen my heart and I did not like what I saw. I will not beat up on my self and continue to feel guilty, but I will pray diligently that God will change my heart and not let me do that again. He is so good that He would show me, b/c we do not work on what we do not see. If we are not aware that we need to change, we don't seek Him to change us. What an amazing and gracious God we serve that He does not let us be complacent. "He who began a good work in us, will be faithful to complete it til the day of Christ."

I am filled with the Holy Spirit and He gives me power to love, impact and care. We should be so finely tuned and aware that He is in us and He leads those in need to our paths. If we will just open our eyes to see the need and realize that we have the answer, if we could only have compassion, what could we do in this world. Why has the church become the laughing stock of the world; why is the church so impotent that we hardly change any place we are? It is b/c we don't love. We don't see that every person we pass each day was created in the image of God and is one that He died for. Lord, give us eyes to see, ears to hear, and a heart to care. How many times do we walk by someone who desperately needs what we have and we don't have to heart to see it and care enough to share, to reach our hands out?

I didn't even just walk by, God brought her to my door and I looked the other way. Change my heart o God!!!!

Just wanted to share; I hope that my harsh lesson opens the doors of your hearts so you can learn from me and maybe do better in the face of the test than I did.

No comments:

Post a Comment