My in-laws have been having a new kitchen fitted, and it fell to me during a recent ‘holiday’ to remove the wall and floor tiles in preparation for the fitters. The property is only about 40 years old, but as I started to remove the tiles after the old units had been taken out, I discovered that the original tiles were still there. In fact there were three or four layers of tiling on some areas of the walls. The same thing was true of the floors – blue then red then wood-effect vinyl tiles stuck to each other and then covered with a further layer of sheet flooring. When I had stripped off these coverings, the true state of the walls and floor were revealed, and the repair work could commence!
Pretty tiles on pretty tiles on sheets of wooden board may have had a pleasant outer appearance in the kitchen, but the truth was hidden. This made me think of how we cover the unsound places in our lives with ‘decoration’ to hide the truth. We put on a front so that people will think how good or successful, or spiritual we are, but if the truth were known underneath we may be in need of a lot of restoration and healing.
Jesus identified this problem in Matthew 23 when He confronted the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees with their external show of righteousness which actually hid the damage they had on the inside. Why were they so corrupt and unrighteous in their private behaviour? Maybe the enemy had preyed on their insecurities and desire for acceptance and belonging so that they could no longer distinguish right from wrong? Jesus certainly was very direct with them.
To remove the layers of covering took time, effort and getting my hands dirty. As we start to allow the Lord to uncover our places in need of healing, we may also need some time to address the issues, to put in the spiritual and emotional effort that may be required to expose the truth, and to be prepared for getting our ‘hands dirty’. After all isn’t that what the healing ministry is about – no cover ups, just the truth revealed and brought to Jesus?
Prayer: Thank You, Jesus, that You’re not disgusted by our hidden damage, and that You invite us to be real with You as You’re with us. Please give us the confidence to allow Your Holy Spirit to strip away the superficial covering which we have allowed to hide our true selves from others, so that we can be honest with You. Amen.
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