Sunday, September 20, 2009

I personally want to see God

So, God has been continually bringing my attention back to the issue of purity, specifically regarding the struggle today that people are having (Christians included) with pornography and sexual sins. This is definitely not a topic that I am comfortable with, with my somewhat shy, reserved nature, but when God gives you a passion for something and persists in leading you towards it, at some point you just have to surrender to it if you want to go with Him.

Anyways, I was burdened again tonight with the fact that so many believers seem so desensitized to the sexuality that they promote, the lack of clothing that they wear, etc., as though they have no idea what this does to men, even their brothers in Christ, or that they don't care. I choose to give them the benefit of the doubt that they have just been so exposed to the sensuality of TV/media, etc., that they no longer see the danger of it, and it just has slowly crept its way into their wardrobe and behavior.

But it burdens my heart for two reasons in particular. One, the immense struggle that people have, mainly guys, when it comes to being visually oriented, and seeing women wearing revealing clothing and acting in a provocative manner, especially when they are in an environment that is supposed to offer safety and shelter from this.

Secondly, it burdens my heart for these women, who for whatever reason, have fallen into the lie that they need to act this way for attention, or have just been so deceived into not seeing how it affects others around them. And in this, they miss so much of what God offers to those that desire and seek after purity of mind, heart, & body.

I've always been told that I'm 'too sensitive' and so often have felt as though this was a huge weakness personally. But I've come to see more and more of God's purpose in creating me this way, that not in my own righteousness do I have the ability to see this, but in the specific way that He has created me that enables me to be set apart by my sensitivity to these issues to see it more clearly. Lord knows that I have had my days behind me, and even some days more recently in terms of my heart's condition, that have been far from pure. But He has also blessed me with some experiences of Him that result from giving up certain things that were desensitizing me to Him, and once you have a taste of His goodness, you don't want to turn back.

Anyways, i find myself so often responding in my flesh to others' lack of purity, angered and frustrated by it, as though it's a personal offense. But the Lord is slowing changing my heart to see that so often we're blinded to these kind of things, and in the same way that I did not draw myself out of my own pits, others don't have the ability to either, except through surrender to God, that is.

And it was very cool because tonight He led me to some verses of purity that can better help me to pray for myself, my marriage, and others around me by speaking God's truth to it. He is the One that opens our eyes to reveal Truth, and the battle that we face is spiritual, so allowing myself to get frustrated or disappointed at individuals is just missing the point.

This is not to say that we, as believers, once we have learned the Truth that we don't have personal responsibility in how we respond to this. I believe that we are called to pursue holiness, which necessitates purity, with all that is within us, in order to walk in the Spirit, abide in God, and to fulfill the purposes that He sets before us through His Spirit. And I believe that we forfeit this intimate nature of fellowship, the higher calling on our lives, when we settle for a remote relationship hindered by the ways that we settle for the lesser, impure things of this world.

2 Timothy 2:20 - 21

But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also [utensils] of wood and earthenware, and some for honorable and noble [use] and some for menial and ignoble [use]. So whoever cleanses himself [from what is ignoble and unclean, who separates himself from contact with contaminating and corrupting influences] will [then himself] be a vessel set apart and useful for honorable and noble purposes, consecrated and profitable to the Master, fit and ready for any good work."

Scripture says that if we pursue our own desires long enough, the Lord will give us over to them. We will no longer hunger for the things of Him and no longer remember what it was like to experience anything better. It's the anesthetic nature of sin - numbing us to the Truth for a while, but it never lasts forever, and we have to continue to go back to these broken cisterns to try to get another swig before we start to feel the pain and hint of emptiness in it.

consecrated - set apart, distinct from its surroundings

Does your life look consecrated? Does mine? Do we stand out like a light on a hill, because our purity and integrity speak so loudly for themselves, or do people only know that we're Christians because we say that we go to church, attend a Bible study, pray before a meal? Do non-believers even see Christians as different anymore?

I challenge you to seek out personally what God's Word says about purity - the promises offered those that pursue it, the benefits provided by those that abide there, and the dangers that come when we so easily forsake it. And until we can get freed from the bondage that this type of deception offers us, we're never going to be able to reach out to the world around us to offer them anything other than a sympathetic handshake and nod, because we know what it's like because we're right there with them. I personally want to "see God" (Matthew 5:8).

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