Hey TD’ers! Have you ever been naked in front of someone? Perhaps in the locker room or in front of a doctor or nurse? How did you feel? Why did you feel that way? Have you ever felt spiritually naked? How did that feel? What determines its appropriateness, how you feel, and how you will respond?
In this next essay in “The Pernicious Lie” series, Sandra strips away our camouflage, calls it like it is, and calls us to get naked and get real. Please read, work through it, and then act! – Arthur
The Pernicious Lie – “What you see is what you get”
You wake up in the morning, open your eyes, turn off the irritating alarm and get out of bed. You stumble into the bathroom and you stare into the mirror…..you are looking at yourself. Or are you? You brush your teeth, wash your face, put on your make-up, put on your clothes, and are now presentable to face the world. This is the pernicious lie – What you see is what you get. You took care of your body, the casing of yourself, but your real self may have never gotten out of bed.
Ever since the Garden of Eden, mankind has had this confusion about who we really are. After Adam and Eve disobediently ate of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, their eyes were opened in one sense and closed in another sense. After they sinned, the physical world became their default lenses, and they immediately saw that they were physically naked and sewed fig leaves to cover themselves up. Their immediate concern was to take care of the nakedness of their bodies.
The Naked Truth – “What you don’t see is what you get”
As the day progresses, your mind starts “talking” to you. “I feel so tired, I wish I could sleep more today.” “What should I wear today?” “What should I eat for breakfast?” All these random thoughts flood our minds. We think that no one can “hear” these thoughts because we aren’t verbally talking to anyone. The last we saw, there weren’t any bubbles over our heads with these thoughts being broadcast to everyone around us. Yet, the truth is that all these thoughts (plus more), our emotions, our guilt, our insecurities are PLAINLY visible to God and eventually get revealed to those close to us one way or another. What you don’t see is what you get.
After Adam and Eve made clothes for themselves (Gen. 3:7), they actually thought that they could hide from God. It’s almost like kids playing hide and seek. They stand in broad daylight, covering up their eyes. They figure, if I can’t see anyone, then they can’t possibly see me. We use that same logic for God. Since we can’t “see” our own sinfulness, surely God and others can’t see it either. The truth is God sees it as clear as day and so do others that have the eyes of the Spirit.
The Solution – “Lord, help us to see what we don’t see”
We are all playing charades, pretending to be who we are really not. We walk around as blind men, “talking” about all the things that we are “seeing.” Our thought lives are not neutral. Trivial, earthbound thoughts make us trivial, earthbound people. We need to have courage to first deal with all the “crud” that is in our own hearts and then we have to be truthful enough to relate to others on that unseen level. Like Spurgeon said, “You cannot slander human nature, it is worse than words can paint it.” This takes time, commitment and spiritual eyes. It is not done in sound bites, in posted comments, or on virtual “walls,” but by much time spent under His gaze through the Word.
God had compassion on Adam and Eve. He killed animals to make them clothing that was much more durable than fig leaves. God is willing to do the same for us today. He provided the perfect Lamb to cover our nakedness on Calvary. But we must be willing to take off our own flimsy coverings of fig leaves and humbly come to Him in full nakedness.
Every day is a challenge to pray, “Lord, help us to see what we don’t see.” As we read in II Cor. 3:18, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.” In II Peter 1:5-9, God outlines our journey for us, “Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge, and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness, and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins.”
How is your eyesight these days? Focus on the Family’s Del Tackett calls us out and poignantly asks, “Do you really believe that what you believe is really real?” These bodies will fail us and then our “security blanket” will be removed. At that point, may we find that we obeyed His command for us to “put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regards to its lusts.” (Rom. 13:14) So, tomorrow, when you wake up to brush your teeth, don’t forget that your spiritual “morning breath” is more offensive than your bad breath. Take the time to let the Word “wash” you up!
– Sandra Hsieh