July 31

“You shall not spread a false report.”  Exodus 23:1

“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved by him, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly explaining the word of truth.”  2 Timothy 2:15

Transparency has become a buzzword on the public stage.  Leaders promise to be straightforward and honest.  We are challenged to know what to believe … fake news, conspiracy theories, coverups and accusations … We need fact checks.  Sometimes things are as bad as they seem. 

We say “It is what it is” to express acceptance of the truth, even as we live in denial.  We try to smooth out difficult situations and say things are fine, will get better, when we don’t feel that way at all.  “Talking the talk and walking the talk” are two different things.  We pretend to be someone other than our true self.  We aren’t happy with the model we have become.  I wish I had done this … I wish I hadn’t done that … could’ve, would’ve, should’ve … embarrassed by, ashamed of past mistakes.  Feeling at peace is more than saying so.

Thanks be to God, like Popeye we can say “I yam what I yam!”  God knows all about those skeletons heaped in the closet and loves us just the same.  Knowing I need forgiveness, truly repenting, accepting God’s grace and mercy, as a redeemed child of God I can humbly accept myself as God accepts and loves me.   Trusting the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we live as God’s ambassador to others, with kindness, hospitality, empathy and compassion, justice.  We do what we do in God’s name, gratefully acknowledging and using the gifts God has given us, for God’s glory.  (Micah 6:6-8)

“Just as I am thou wilt receive, wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;

Because thy promise I believe, o Lamb of God, I come.”  Amen

(prayer text Charlotte Elliott)

Verla Olson