May Truth be the voice you lean in to hear and trust the most.
By some unspeakable Grace, may you find Truth to have the most Loving Eyes you have ever seen looking straight past your weakness and into you.
May Truth be the Kindest song you ever heard. And may you play it over and over again in your heart until you meet Him face to face.
I wrote this blessing for my love on his birthday, but as I wrote it, I felt like it needed to be shouted to every unsure soul, which is every honest soul I know. We forget who we are. Our fallen default is to be afraid of the Truth, but Truth and Love are One.
Much of my life I have believed that I had to choose between Kindness and Truth. If someone said something kind, well they might not know the whole truth about me. I know my faults and what I woke up looking like, so when you see me with my makeup on or being sweet when I know how I just apologized to my child for being the exact opposite, I had a hard time receiving a compliment as truth.
I also would feel confident when I first met someone, because they didn’t know my faults, but after I blew it and they knew it, I would be so ashamed. I would retreat into my shell. I felt that because I was a Christian, I had to be perfect or no one would see Jesus in me. And I never could be perfect. Oh, how I tried. I tried so hard for years.
And you may think I’m foolish, but I listened to all those sermons, and if they were telling me to do something else, I can’t think of what they possibly meant. And then I read, “For the law (rules) never made anything perfect. But now we have confidence in a better hope, through which we draw near to God.” (Hebrews 7:19)
That hope is Jesus. So I stopped trying to be perfect on the outside. I focused on abiding, just being with Him, every moment, every day. And guess what? I still blow it and have to apologize to people and to Him. I get it wrong, pretty often. With my husband last night. With my son yesterday. Need I go on, or are you right here in the same boat with me?
Here’s what I learned, though. Every time I went to Him after I sinned and apologized, I thought He would pull away, be disgusted. He never has. He just welcomes me back. My Father isn’t into lecturing. He’s into loving and enjoying His kids. (Oh, how I want to do the same with my own kids).
I see Him smiling all the time, as I abide. Frankly, I don’t understand. He’s so much nicer than I thought He would be. I wonder if it’s real. You said that yesterday, Lord. Is that really you? How could you love me so much in every season?
And then I remembered this blessing in scripture, “The Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron and his sons, ‘This is how you are to bless the Israelites. Say to them: “ ‘ “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.” ’
“So they will put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.””Numbers 6:22-27 NIV
When we abide in His presence and see that smile and learn to trust that smile, we are receiving the blessing of the Lord. We’re receiving peace. This is how we receive His name. This is how people know we belong to Him. Just sitting in the light of His smile. Letting that be enough.
We are His workmanship. I never thought much of that other than He is working on me, and there’s a lot to work on in me! That word “workmanship,” our friend, Jim Hill, once said it means opus, the crowning masterpiece of a master craftsman. Well, that changes things. And we wouldn’t want to undermine a Master Craftsman’s work, now would we? I’ve not chiseled marble and I don’t know how to get from a slab to a David, but Michelangelo said, “I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.”
Maybe that’s how God works. Sounds a lot like calling things that are not, as though they are. Maybe He sees some rough edges to carve off. Sometimes, when we look at ourselves through His eyes, we see a glimpse of what will be, but then wonder if we’re seeing it right at all. If he says you’re beautiful when you just woke up and your son gave you the crazy hair award, just trust Him -God, not your son- or maybe both of them. Don’t be surprised when Truth and Kindness are married. He knows who He is, and He knows who you are. He’s calling you into what you will be. And He has the final word. Let Him. It goes much smoother that way.
Preaching to myself again.
“God’s truth and faithful love join together. His peace and holiness kiss each other.”
Psalm 85:10 NIRV