Past Influencing Today’s Judgment

Today I am getting out the wire brush, Brillo pad, and bleach for my soul. It’s as if my soul is this room with a pretty wood arched carved door,  dusty black iron hinges, and a sliding bar with a ring for a door handle. It’s time to open that door because there is something unhealthy in there.

In my time with my heavenly Dad He was talking about the rules of knowing him (putting Him in a box) verses having a relationship with Him.

That’s not where the soul cleansing is needed (not that that area couldn’t use MUCH more elbow grease than is currently being used). As I was contemplating this thought (taking my time 😉 ) I began to play the attached worship clip. The music was beautiful, but this is where my background and life experiences taint the purity of God’s love.

The video was of a group of modern grunge artists in a circle in an abandoned building–all of which I think is seriously cool. They began to sing, again beautifully, but that’s when my past gets in the way.

I will admit I grew up in a box. My walk with my heavenly Dad was more about following rules than having this relationship that I am learning. I truly believed that if I followed all of the rules that good things would happened. If really bad things happened it was because I sinned along the road somewhere and needed to figure out which rule I had broken.

There were always the exceptions to the rules: the family handling MS in the parents, special needs children, or the farm accident. I was taught that “God was going to use” those situations for His glory. That part was right, but it’s not like He caused the pain. He did allow it to happen, though, just like Archie going home… .

Anyway, this group was being taped and all of them were worshiping in their own ways, most eyes closed, hands raised–again, not effecting me, but then my past came creeping back.

I was raised with a pretty strict background. Hymns only, King James Version only of the Bible, NO raising of hands (that was drawing attention to one’s self), and the “amen” during a message was always shocking as it was rare. There is nothing wrong about any of that and I appreciate my upbringing as it gave me a firm foundation.

I dated/married Archie who was from a very charismatic background. I enjoyed that at his church people would sway to the chorus’ preformed by the band. I liked that people could raise a hand without feeling like other’s were judging, because that was between them and God (others just happened to be in the room). Then the service ended…that’s when the baggage was thrown onto my pile. Arch and I (sitting near the back of the church, as most teenagers of our era did) were the first ones out the door and practically sprinted to the car (we were going on a date after church). Errrk! The band was behind the church, um, let’s just say,”What would Jesus do?” Not that. So, that association stuck.

For some reason, watching that video caught me in judgment. “I wonder if their walk when they leave that building is what they are displaying for the camera? I wonder if it’s real?”

OH MY! Who am I to judge anyone?!?!? I was so angry with myself. That’s when the soul cleansing equipment came out. Shame on me for judging anyone based on what they wear or how they act. Yes, life experience has taught me wonderful lessons but one of my favorites I had tucked away: “Trust, but verify.” These gifted individuals were not coming to my church or Sunday School class to speak. I was not supporting them by buying their album. They were singing praise to my heavenly Dad and He allowed me the blessing. How cool is that?

Had any of these other situations with the unknown artists been offered, I would have to research. I am very careful of whom I open my mind and spirit to listen to, in regards to my heavenly Dad. Praise music? My heavenly Dad reminded me to eat the fish and spit out the bones. I went back to writing, so I could hear the music but not watch the video.

How many other areas of my life do I allow preconceived ideas to hinder the next step my heavenly Dad has for me? Ultimately, who am I following? Him or others that I am placing on pedestals around myself? Shame on me. Back to scouring… .

1 Samuel 16:7 “But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”

Until tomorrow: Blessings!

 

 

Author: Tracy Cook

Widowed one week before our 27th wedding anniversary, Heavenly Dad continues to carry me, now blessing me with a second chance for love.

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