Having two Indonesian guests for a few days for whom English is their second language has reminded me of how difficult communication can be at times. These guys spoke very well but even so there was occasional confusion easily resolved with a little patience and a lot of good humour.
So, I have to tell you about a Westerner I knew of who was on a preaching tour of Indonesia and reckoned he had picked up enough language to by-pass his interpreter and directly ask the congregation to, “Please open the windows, as it’s so hot in here!” Unfortunately, he got the word for ‘windows’ wrong and instead asked them to, “Please take off your trousers!” That one took a moment or two to sort out.
Of course, men have a long tradition of misunderstanding women; even though both appear to speak the same language. I used to think I could read my Lady like a book but have more lately come to realize I am mostly on the wrong page and sometimes find myself wondering if I even have the right publication in front of me.
Not so with God. With Him, if He has an issue with you, you know exactly what it is and what you must do about it. And whenever you come to pray, there it is again in black and white, spelled out in words of one syllable, right in your face. And it stays there until you put it right. Isn’t that so? And remember your conversion? That was pretty clear cut wasn’t it?
However, we can also experience a grey area at times when all we feel is an undefined guiltiness and un-holiness with no way in sight of what to do to about it. This is what comes of living in the twilight zone of earth’s no-man’s land between Heaven and Hell as Satan attempts to erode our faith with his perversions of God’s truth. And his favourite trick, it seems to me, is to take the basic truth that we are sinners in need of forgiveness and suggest that before God can accept us and forgive us, we must make ourselves a little better, a little more presentable. As, of course, we can’t do this he has created a catch 22 scenario for us that has no resolution, only faith debilitating frustration.
The truth is, God accepts us always, in whatever state we are. Maybe we should relax a little and just believe the words of Jesus. And this month of resting could be a good place to start.
Mt 11:28 Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
September 11, 2020
September 10, 2020
August 28, 2020