two things: righteousness and open- heartedness.
reading through the psalms recently, i was struck by the recurring theme of righteousness.
"Love and faithfulness meet together, righteousness and peace kiss each other. Faithfulness springs forth from the earth, and righteousness looks down from heaven. Righteousness goes before him and prepares the way for his steps" (Psalm 85)
"Let those who love the Lord hate evil, for he guards the lives of his faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked. Light is shed upon the righteous and joy on the upright heart. Rejoice in the Lord, you who are righteous and praise his holy name" (Psalm 97)
'righteousness goes before him and prepares the way for his steps' this made me think about how it's so easy to go about daily life while sitting and waiting for God to show up. especially the hard times, it's easy to question where God is when he seems so silent. but i love this idea of righteousness preparing the way for him. why should i expect God to show up if there is so much sin in my life? my life is not fit for the perfect king.it also answers the question for me about the tension between grace and law. on the one hand, as a christian i should follow God's 'rules', on the other hand, where's the motivation if, ultimately, all my sin is covered in grace? well, my life will never be fully fit for the perfect king but with righteous intentions, it will be a heck of a lot better than a selfish life relying on grace to get by. and i want my life to be fit for the king, because i want him to step in. so there's grace for those times when i humanly fail to act righteously, but i still want to abide by righteous intentions so that my heart is in the right place for Jesus to step in.
'light is shed upon the righteous' i've spent so long, wondering where God is, blunting my hurts with rebellion. no wonder i've found myself in such dark places when i've been so unfaithful and so unrighteous.
i feel a call on my life to be more righteous, to be more holy. to prepare my heart and my life for Jesus to step in.
the second thing: open-heartedness.
God's been speaking to me about opening my heart to people. I've been pleasantly surprised lately how far a little honesty can go to contributing to healing. in the picture above is an open heart locket, which my friend gave to me as a symbol of my open heart. i was really touched by that gift and i feel secure in God's promise of freedom, which can only really come through honesty and openness.