Perhaps we should rejoice every now and then about how wonderful a thing it is to be saved. I’m talking about laugh out loud going around with a big grin on your face, look at me kind of joy; not arrogant or pride filled, not smug or egotistical, but rather humbled and confident, relieved and knowing, secure and sure. I mean why not? I find myself at times, so thankful that I finally got it right that it really does take some emotional restraint not to start grabbing and hugging total strangers, let alone folk I care about and those who care about me. The underlying truth that makes this possible is that truth based on the acceptance of self. I am of the belief that you cannot accept Christ in your life until you’ve come to brutal grips with exactly who you are, or were. I know it sounds simple enough and because it does, I think it gets by many people. After all, most of us spend a lifetime trying to please others, impress others, thinking way too much about what others think of us. In so doing, we allow ourselves to empower others to define us in terms of who they think we are or how we should act. The sad reality is we often times try to live up to those expectations only to spend far too much time living down to them.
Inevitably we disappoint. We disappoint others and live a life thinking something is wrong with us. The truth is the only ones who matter in this regard are God and us; God because He didn’t make a mistake and us because we were stupid enough to allow someone else’s definition of who we are and what we can become to supersede God’s plan for our existence. That mistake is ours and salvation is the only road to a clear picture of who we are, whose we are and what we are destined to become. Now let me warn you. There is some danger associated with walking around enveloped by the truth of salvation. Truth, as the bible does say, will set you free. But it can hurt. Being enlightened in this way gives you a telescope into your own soul that will scald you to no end with its intensity. I’ve come to expect to see glimpses of my past in the light that now keeps me extremely humble and thankful that there’s a God who knows all about me and still loves me in spite of it all. You see I like me now. No, check that. I love me now. Whether you do or not, doesn’t really matter. Salvation has a way of giving you insight into yourself that inoculates you against the ridiculous notion that you’re here to somehow please another person. You see whomever they are can’t compare to a God who loves you, flaws and scars and all. Excuse me but that’s a helluva, no, that’s a heavenly thing. You can take me or leave me. Once the light of salvation goes on, you must accept what you see. It was you. You were there. Guilty, you did it. But in the light of salvation, your past is used by God to provide testimony to help others know there’s hope for them too. God is just waiting on you to turn the light on and recognize your past is the most valuable part of you.
The truth is when the light does come on, those stains you see on your soul, they will burn off the closer you get to the light’s source. It all comes down to that man or woman looking back at you in the mirror. Don’t accept or internalize meaningless criticism. The only opinion that matters is that of the most high. Don’t let others put limits on you and please don’t put limits on yourself. God hasn’t. And therein lies the beauty of salvation’s truth. It ought to bring that grin I was talking about to your face. Turn your light on and let God turn up the heat. It might burn for a minute. But the longer you stay in the light, you will come to understand that the darkness you were in, ain’t got nothing for you anymore. If that’s not worth smiling about, it’s certainly worth shouting about. May God bless and keep you always.