I love reading Dear Abby because it gives me so much inspiration.
Sadly, it is inspiration to write about the decrepit state of humanity, how misguided and faithless people are. But I write about it here in the hope that if just one person can be convicted of their lack of faith, which contributes to the insecurity they feel, and be made to understand that it comes from not trusting in God and His authority, maybe (just maybe) that person can be led to the Lord.
So what was today’s “inspiring” entry? A woman said her hubby bought her a pocketbook, expensive and chic, that she has always wanted. However, now that she has it she is unable to wear it because she is afraid of what other people may think about it. She went into how they may think she is “showing off”, or maybe will want to steal it, or may feel bad that they can’t afford one …all excuses based in (I believe) some insecurity she suffers from.
Reading this letter I don’t just see the irony of the situation, which is now that she has received what she always wanted, she won’t allow herself to enjoy it. What I see is a more spiritual issue, that being, when some people are saved they don’t do anything with it.
Yeshua (Jesus) said that one doesn’t buy a lamp to keep it under a bowl (Matthew 5:15); this poor woman has been given a light, so to speak, yet she is keeping it under a bowl. All she can think of is what other’s may think about her, and she hasn’t realized that this isn’t something to be embarrassed or ashamed of, but it is a light: she should show this pocketbook off as much as she can so other’s can inquire, and she can tell them of the love her husband has for her (just like the love God has for all of us), of the value of saving for something, of the appreciation she has for her husband, or just how all wonderful things are supplied by God. She can point out to everyone that her pocketbook is more than a chic piece of personal apparel, it is representative of the good things that await us all if we are patient and trusting in God to deliver.
All that good stuff just from having a pocketbook! Think of what we can do with showing off our salvation, if we are willing to expose it to the world!
My Pastor likes to use the expression, “Get out of Goshen!’ when talking about not using one’s salvation. There are so many churches that preach saving your soul, the love of Messiah, and constantly have altar calls to save souls for Jesus. All good stuff, but what about what comes next? It’s all nice to hear about being loved and saved from destruction, but you have to do something with your salvation: painting the blood on the lentils of your house isn’t the goal, it’s the first step. It is, in truth, one of the least important things about salvation because it isn’t what you do to get saved, it’s what you do once you are saved that really matters.
This poor lady, when she received her pocketbook, made the beginning of her joy the end of it! Once she received what she wanted, she didn’t do anything with it, and now is sadder after receiving her valued possession than when she wanted it. When we are saved, we need to show it off to the world- we need to take that lamp and place it on the highest shelf we have, we need to “talk it up” to everyone we meet (without being a pain in the butt or a “Bible-thumper”) and we need to take the salvation we have received and share it with others.
There is a parable in the Gospels about the king who gave talents (money) to three of his servants before he went on a long trip. When he returned, two of his servants used what the king gave them to increase it, and returned more than what they had been given, for which the king rewarded them. The third servant buried it in the ground, and returned only what he had been given. That servant was chastised and thrown into the dark because he failed to use what he had been given. I interpret this to mean the talents represent salvation, and we need to spread it out, to invest it, so that when we meet God on Judgement Day we can present to Him more than what He gave us, which would be the results of our spreading the Good News throughout our lifetime to others.
You can’t grow a garden without planting seeds, which is our job: we plant the seed and leave it to God to water the ground and grow the produce. When we are cleansed of our sin we are also given a bag of seeds, the seed of salvation, and God expects (nay, requires) that we sow those seeds everywhere we go.
If you have been saved from destruction through the sacrifice of Yeshua ha Meshiach (Jesus Christ), you have had His blood painted on your doorposts: now you need to leave Goshen. That means you must spread His word, tell everyone how God has saved you, blessed you and protected you even in the midst of your troubles and tribulations. You need to let your light shine. Don’t worry about what negative thoughts people may have, because there will always be people who are jealous and envious and will try to bring others down so they feel better about themselves. We should pray for them, ignore their taunts, and continue to praise God to the rest of the world.
Bragging in yourself is wrong, but bragging in God is right, so brag about all God has done by glorifying His name in all you say and do, and show off that pocketbook to everyone you see.