Is any of that for real?

I have a observed this trend to get eyelash extensions, lip puff ups, and other types of augmentation. If you have them don't be mad at me right now, but why on earth do some of these gals get those eyelashes almost an inch long? It is like they almost need to work at opening their eyes! Those lashes are so long and with all the mascara on them to boot, they must catch the focus of their eye a whole lot. I also notice the lip enhancements with some form of stuff that is meant to puff them up, the eyeliner that goes on forever, and the six inch heels with the pointy toes. Mom had always taught me to leave the house "presentable". This does not mean I dress up, or 'super-enhance' what I have, but simply that I don't go out in my PJs or with hair every which way! Silly, isn't it, how much we focus on the external as our "view" of being presentable or beautiful to those around us?

So, friends, we can now—without hesitation—walk right up to God, into "the Holy Place." Jesus has cleared the way by the blood of his sacrifice, acting as our priest before God. The "curtain" into God's presence is his body. So let's do it—full of belief, confident that we're presentable inside and out. Let's keep a firm grip on the promises that keep us going. He always keeps his word. Let's see how inventive we can be in encouraging love and helping out, not avoiding worshiping together as some do but spurring each other on, especially as we see the big Day approaching. (Hebrews 10:19-25)

Presentable INSIDE and OUT! This should be our goal! Jesus knows exactly what we are like - it doesn't matter how we "dress ourselves up" - he knows us inside and out, just as we are underneath everything we try to 'add' to our appearance to give some 'other' impression of what we are already! Amazingly, he loves us exactly as he knows us - exactly as we are! There is no hesitation in approaching God when we do it through relationship with Jesus - because 'in Jesus' we are made as beautiful as we could ever hope to be. Just as every home needs a doorway by which we enter, so access to God is through the blood sacrifice of Jesus. There is no other way to God EXCEPT through Christ. It is this relationship which gives us the boldness to enter into God's presence - no longer fearful of what he sees when he looks upon us. Why? Simply because he sees Jesus and the effect he has in our lives when he looks upon us!

We often hesitate to enter God's presence because of some guilt over past or recent sin, kind of like when we have curlers in our hair or no make-up on and don't want to be seen in public. The truth of the matter is God already knows about our sin and he has provided a perfect "covering" for our sin - the blood of Jesus. We need not avoid contact with God simply because we have sinned - in fact, we need to confess our sin and move right up close to God for his healing touch! The confidence of being fully presentable (inside and out) is something we need to appropriate and believe in our lives. We live far below our potential when we listen to our own mind's arguments of our "worth" or "value" or "beauty". The very thing which gives us supreme value and beauty is Christ inside of us! There is no other action which makes us "more presentable" or "more beautiful".

The good news is the "clean-up" or "transformation" of our lives has begun, but it isn't finished! We come to Christ with all our "baggage" of past hurts, wrong actions, and selfish deeds. He takes them, one-by-one, and replaces them with the perfect touch of his grace. We need a firm grip on what keeps us "centered". Plainly put, this is the Word of God. The more we allow the Word of God to get INTO us, the more it will affect what comes OUT of us (inside and out equally affected). No amount of 'self-beautifying' effort is more rewarded than the time we take getting the Word into our lives. The good news is we don't need to look into the mirror of the Word alone - we have been given each other to spur each other on - to help each other take frequent and long looks into the mirror of God's Word. No race is easy to run! In fact, whenever we "ramp up" our momentum, there are usually multiple obstacles to overcome. This makes it all the more important to not run alone! We need each other! A spur "digs in" and causes the one being spurred to become acutely aware of the action required. It is good to have others who will alert us to action and to assist us in "ramping up" when we need to! So, blemishes and all, don't be afraid to enter God's presence! Who knows - maybe his touch will leave you with so much inward beauty you won't care about those 'artificial beautifiers' any longer! Just sayin!


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