We sat at our dining table in our Christmas cottage by the ocean. Just about ready for our communion before we proceeded with our full on Christmas dinner. The pretty glasses were filled with sparkling cider, the home made bread gifted by a friend sat in place.
Everything looked and felt perfect. In an instant, that feeling changed, as there was a sudden and extremely important issue of the heart to attend to. Feelings, feelings. Definitely not where I should ever place my dependency on.
Real beauty is not in the outward appearance. Perfectly set table, dressed up for the event, everyone in their proper assigned seating. Making it all special. Now don’t move… and it will be glamorous! Smiles wide now. We can do this. Oh what a ridged life I still yearn to break free of. God has done a work, and He is not finished with me yet. He is breaking the chains and making me freer.
God is working out my flesh. My programmed ways of thinking that are so not Him. In this past month He has been working over time on the area of surrender again in my life.
My flesh, very well could have reacted in throwing a fit, in the moment. I confess. It has before. Either keeping the mumbling low within myself, or outwardly throwing my own form of fit. I mean come on, we are ready to sit down to Christmas dinner!! It’s supposed to be wondrous, and perfect, and joyful and beaming smiles of awe and wonder and delight. This moment is ruined! Only if I choose to not surrender. Only if I choose to depend on feelings, the outward conformity, rather than JESUS!!
I am thankful I surrendered. In the moment of difficulty, is where Jesus was!!! This is where the BEAUTY happened at the special Christmas feast. I mean, if I look at it from the REAL perspective, this IS EXACTLY WHY WE ARE CELEBRATING CHRISTMAS!!! Jesus coming to save us from our brokenness. So I surrendered around the bread and cup. We embraced this moment of Jesus with us. We addressed the issue of the heart. Took the time, to pause and believe “He works all things together for His good” and depend on our Savior.
Tears were shed. Hearts were touched. Attitudes not changed on an outward level of conformity but truly from the inside out. How beautiful to pick up that bread and cup then and thank God for sending Jesus for these very reasons.
A heart that changed, that we didn’t even see the whole, significant amount of transformation the Holy Spirit had done, until the next day. When potential for a challenge to arise in a heart, the heart responded with beauty, with peace, with JESUS ruling and reigning. Testimony of the gracious love of the Savior.
That is the beauty I want! Not the glamour, the outward conformity. The beauty that can come, through realizing in the moment of difficulty we need JESUS! Basking in this truth, His love, and surrendering to His purposes right in the moment, believing He will work this together for glorious good. Real beauty that sticks!! Remains forever and ever!!
“The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7