Neisha-Ann Thompson, Ph.D

"Give me a Word to sustain the weary; awaken my ear to listen." - Isaiah 50:4

Tag: light

Step Into The Light

As we bask in this the first day of a new year, I wanted to share a Word that has been on my heart concerning the Body of Christ.

John 3:20-21For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.
1 John 1:7 … If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.

These scriptures confirm two things: (1) we can’t fellowship with each other while in darkness, and (2) it is as we walk in the Light of God’s Word AND fellowship with one another, that our sins are cleansed.

For 2015, God is calling for His Body to be united in love, and for this to happen, we have to first be willing to be exposed and vulnerable with each other. The scriptures are clear – the reason we don’t have fellowship with each other – the reason so many broken relationships exist in the Body of Christ – is because we’re not walking in the Light (i.e. truth, authenticity, integrity, love, etc.). Fellowship in the Light involves vulnerabilities and exposure; and takes great courage and strength.

The Bible refers to “the unfruitful works of darkness” (Ref. Ephesians 5:11), clearly signaling to us that nothing done in the dark will bear fruit. Our relationships cannot develop in darkness (i.e. dishonesty, dissimulation, denial, etc.), as true fellowship is hindered and blocked where there is no Light.

Our fear of exposure (and the possible rejection that often comes with exposure) as we attempt to form meaningful relationships, is completely understandable. Perhaps this is why we choose to remain in the dark and consequently why relationships in the Body are suffering. We fear being exposed, when in reality we all are naked, and have been, ever since Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden (Ref. Genesis 3:6-7). “Darkness” for us can be compared to the proverbial “leaves” that Adam and Eve used to cover themselves back then. And just like them, our covering up and hiding (in the dark or via “leaves”) has resulted in broken fellowship in our relationships with each other and with God. Furthermore, all this hiding and covering up has, as the scripture suggests, prevented our own sins from being cleansed (1 John 1:7b).

My friends, it’s time to be ALL God has called us to be in EVERY area of our lives! I challenge you, as you move into 2015, to step into the Light. Know that everythingabout you — that being in relationship could potentially expose — has already been covered by the blood of Jesus. We can embrace our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ knowing that our sins are being covered and cleansed as we walk together in the Light of His love. Let 2015 be the year of the Body of Christ truly reflecting Ephesians 4:16 – “being joint and knit together by what every joint supplies…. causing growth of the Body for the edifying of itself in love!

Prayer: Lord, give us willing hearts to risk the vulnerability that comes from walking and fellowshipping with each other in Your Light. Let us know today that You will cover what “leaves” and “darkness” cannot, and that You will cleanse us as we reveal ourselves to You and to each other. Father, as You restore in 2015 ALL we’ve lost (Joel 2:25-26), we thank You for restoring relationships in the Body of Christ. Amen.

YIC,
Neisha

Hiding: From cover to Cover

The game of hide-and-seek originated in the garden of Eden. It involved two people hiding from a God who sought after them. Their approach to hiding involved two aspects, which are still quite common today.

Firstly, they ran for cover (i.e. a physical place to hide). I cannot imagine Adam and Eve standing in the middle of the garden in open view, considering the sin they just committed. No, they found a place to hide – behind a tree, a rock, in the bushes, somewhere. Quite similar to what we do today. When we’ve sinned or feel guilt/shame for an act we’ve committed or a mistake we’ve made, we literally remove ourselves from certain places – we go into hiding. We may refrain from attending church or other gatherings with people who know us and have high expectations of us, and from those who would hold us accountable. Some of us go deep into hiding, confining ourselves to our homes, rooms, closets, etc. It is no different from what Adam and Eve did.

Secondly, they not only ran FOR cover but they tried TO cover their sins (i.e. not wanting their sins to be exposed). In their day they used leaves and figs…. in present day we use different masks, relationships, false witnesses, lies, church (and other) positions, defense mechanisms, and a plethora of wrong/harmful practices. The motive is still the same though – to cover up or hide our sin.

Despite our modern day take on hide-and-seek, the “game” initiated in the garden of Eden continues today. Same script, different cast. We’re still sinners hiding from a God who continues to seek us, to reason with us despite all we’ve done (Isaiah 1:18). You see, we’ve given up our original Covering and have instead tried to find other covers for our sins. We blew off His Cover, and in order to find us He now has to blow ours!

We often don’t like the process of “being found” or in present day terminology “being found out”, because it involves exposure. We’ve become so accustomed to hiding in dark places that the Light is almost blinding. We consider this process painful…. oblivious to the fact that more damage could be done to us if we remained in the dark. Fact of the matter is, hiding from God is like standing behind transparent glass and foolishly hoping not to be seen (Psalm 139:7-12). You see, God’s love is a love that cannot operate in dissimulation. It BLOWS our cover so He can BE our Cover! His ultimate aim is our protection.

The question today is, which would you rather: Having the mask ripped from your face so you can finally breathe, or continuing to suffocate under the guise of having it all together? Would you rather stay hidden in the darkness of condemnation, or step into the Light of God’s love and grace? Do you want the tedious job of having to hide all the time… changing places and faces, or would you rather have your sins be hidden for you and completely annulled? Do you want to continue living a lie, or are you ready to embrace truth? The choice seems pretty clear to me.

So, my brothers and sisters (in my King James Version voice), here’s the conclusion of the whole matter — Although we ditched our Covering to hide under covers that really don’t cover, if we’re willing to blow this temporary cover we’ll have the opportunity to be eternally covered by The Ultimate Coverer!

[cues organ]
Is there one?

YIC,
Neisha

© 2020 Neisha-Ann Thompson, Ph.D

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