Fresh Look

Sometimes we need contrast to see what’s real.

Looking for a pandemic project, I decided to paint the hallway a slightly different color, give the white walls a fresh look.

Brought home fresh paint from the Big Box store. Before the first brush strokes of pristine paint were applied, I saw it.

The realization was undeniable. The walls, doors and trim I assumed were white seemed suddenly more beige. Maybe the dingy off-white of old stains that didn’t respond to wall wash? Definitely not white.

How could it be? I’d walked this hallway multiple times a day, every day, over two decades. In comes new paint, and it’s like seeing my own walls for the first time. With the introduction of contrast – a splash of peach color – came a new perspective. Suddenly, I could see what I was looking at.

It can be this way in our lives with God.

It’s easy to think we “know” God. We’ve been to dozens (maybe hundreds) of church services. Maybe we have familiar religious habits. Or we move in a Christian-ish orbit: the music, the media, the brothers and sisters at small group.

And then comes a real encounter with Christ.

I don’t mean a “church” experience but a moment in time when God breaks through and reveals Himself to us. Seeing who He is reveals who we are. Not who we thought we are or who other people think we are. The real us is exposed. Not rejected. Just naked before a holy God.

When the prophet Isaiah saw the Lord, this was his reaction:

I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty. ”  (Isaiah 6:5)

People who experience a true God-encounter have no illusions about who and what we are. Confronted with the reality of a holy, Almighty God:

  • Pride is vanquished.
  • Boasting is silenced.
  • We see we are not what He is.
  • We know we need to be cleansed.

The Bible says when we compare ourselves with ourselves, we are not wise.

We are not the standard. Christ is.

“None at all is like you, O Lord; you are great and your name is great in might.” (Jeremiah 10:6)

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