Swinging swords at shadows

Let me tell you something about me: I hate shame.

I don’t just hate it intellectually, I hate it experientially.  The cells that store memory in my brain can well testify that I have felt its paralyzing power.

The insidious power of shame over past sin is that it keeps you fighting ghosts.  It distracts. It keeps you swinging at shadows, seeking to slaughter sins long dead.

It’s goal: keep you from seeking to slay shame itself.

Protecting gods from God

And when the men of Ashdod saw how things were, they said, “The ark of the God of Israel must not remain with us, for his hand is hard against us and against Dagon our god.” (1 Samuel 5:7 ESV)

The men of Ashdod saw how things were.  They saw that their lame god kept getting knocked over by the real God.  And so, seeing the weakness of their own god in the face of the God of Israel, they did the only logical thing: sent the presence of God away so that they could live in their delusion, feeling safe with a piece of rock.

The image of the invisible God

Tell me true and glorious things this Christmas Eve, Jonathan Edwards:

Therefore as God with perfect clearness, fullness and strength, understands Himself, views His own essence (in which there is no distinction of substance and act but which is wholly substance and wholly act), that idea which God hath of Himself is absolutely Himself. This representation of the Divine nature and essence is the Divine nature and essence again: so that by God’s thinking of the Deity must certainly be generated. Hereby there is another person begotten, there is another Infinite Eternal Almighty and most holy and the same God, the very same Divine nature.

Two things I don’t thank God for

I like this Thanksgiving thing. I like the idea of specific days when you remember and reflect and consider and thank.

I always start my thanksgiving in the usual obvious place: being thankful to God.  I thank God for all that He has given to me, for all that He has done in me; through me.

You know what I realized this morning as I was reading Luke 22?  There are a couple of things I don’t tend to thank God for:

  1. I don’t tend to thank Him for the painful conviction and broken repentance that followed the moments when I denied Him and exchanged Him for the fleeting pleasures of this world.

Waiting

He’s good at waiting.

He’s been doing it since before the foundation of the world when He dreamed this whole thing up.

Waiting for the fullness of time.  Waiting for the moment of redemption in a billion different stories.  He’s waiting now.

He’s waiting for me to turn back from the pigpen, waiting for my shadowy figure to appear on the horizon, waiting to fling up His robes and run toward me.  He’s waiting for me to turn off the TV and open the letter He left me to tell me to assure me that I’m not alone no matter what it looks like.