The juicy, yet weighty, part of being delivered

Just before heading out the door for an evening church service, Caleb opens the pantry looking for a quick snack. 

Mom!  Why do you have these here?

I presume he’s questioning the location of my dumbbells. 

Firmly planted in the pantry at eye level. 

IMG_3414

I’m going to let you in on a little weakness of mine. 

I’m scared to attempt a handstand against the wall.  There I said it. 

I can’t even do a modified handstand.  And this is an exercise we’re challenged to accomplish at CrossFit. 

{Because, at some point, we’re expected to attempt handstand push-ups.  Which I’m not considering.  My eyes are set on a simple handstand.  Until I look around and my teammates are eventually knocking out push-ups from the handstand.} 

For now, baby steps.  I need to strengthen my shoulders. 

Camden (my fourteen-year-old and loyal CrossFit partner) has been graciously helping me practice throwing my legs up to the wall in my bedroom and catching me when I fall.  He has advised me to push-press my dumbbells overhead throughout the day.

But, I forget if the weights are not in front of my eyes. 

So, I placed them in my pantry.  And I admit to my son.

Because I’m weak.

Caleb accepted this explanation and was pleased to hear I’m working toward accomplishing this goal in a manner which allows him to escape having to catch me (because asking him to help me up into a handstand and then kicking him as I fell was not my finest moment nor his pleasure).

He grabbed his snack, and we headed to church.

As our pastor journeyed through a Psalm, he recalled God asking His people to create reminders.  Symbols to spark interest in the children.  Prompting the sons and daughters to question their significance.

Dad, what’s this for?

Reminders of God’s provision, protection and deliverance. 

A prompt to praise.

My mind instantly pictured my weighted reminders sparking Caleb’s interest.  Now he’s aware of the importance of the beloved handstand.  And his mother’s weakness.

Yet, I have not placed pillars of praise in his sight.  Significant symbols of God’s deliverance setting in his midst so he’ll ask and I can explain.

But do I really want to get that raw with my child? 

To discuss the deliverance I must admit the bondage. 

I’d have to reveal a time when I stepped foot into a Guatemalan orphanage only to realize my heart was hardened toward orphans.  Nearly two decades of social work had carefully calloused a heart in need of protection from the daily atrocities encountered by abused and neglected children. 

And does an orphan advocate admit she doesn’t feel love for orphans?

Only if she wants to be free.

IMG_3432

The Israelites built their pillar of praise after crossing the Red Sea upon being released from slavery. 

Wasn’t I relieved to once find out Noah was drunk and naked, Abraham lied big-style twice and Rebekah and Jacob deceived Isaac {and that’s in just the first book of the Bible}. 

Knowing their weaknesses and seeing their deliverance gave me hope.

Are we concealing the dirty so we appear clean? 

And all the while our children, family, and friends are seeing a superficial walk with Christ through rose-colored glasses.  Spectacles we’ve placed upon their innocent eyes to protect them from the truth.  One day, the lenses will be removed.  They will see clearly.  A crisp picture with a depth of revelation.

Why not remove the façade now? 

Show them deliverance. 

Take a deep breath. 

Admit our weighty weaknesses. 

Then point them to our Strength.

*******

What about you?  Ever found your passage to freedom by admitting your bondage?


For encouragement to expose your weaknesses in order to reveal your Strength:

My Life as a Souped-Up Town Car

Mater (as in Tow Mater) convinced me to take off my church mask

Broken & Poured Out (a lil’ dab won’t do ya)

Losing 12 inches in 30 minutes (or longer depending on your height)

About Cristal

Living life fully as the wife of one, a mother of two and follower of The One.
This entry was posted in Faith and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

24 Responses to The juicy, yet weighty, part of being delivered

  1. kthroyal says:

    First, what’s up with my little avatar face? Lol. But seriously Cristal, actually let people know that I am weak and have fear and failures? Let them see I’m not who they may think I am? that’s one of the problems with “walking in the light”; I get revealed too. People can see the real me. so really? should I? Oh wait…. “only if I want to be free”. Great word Cristal, as usual. God Bless you!

    • Cristal says:

      We can’t see your avatar face…shucks. You’re likely not logged in to WordPress when commenting (which means we can’t click on your name to find your blog…hint hint). ;)

      As I was going through this post and allowing God to show me what He meant by being exposed by the Light, I thought of your recent “revealing” on Facebook and how it ministered to someone in my family. It wasn’t a trigger for gossip. Instead, it offered a sense of relief to this person who realized, although you’re a pastor, you have struggled in your past (and do struggle). It also pointed to a Deliverer. So, thank you for setting that example!

  2. Larry Who says:

    Yes, I do admit struggling with lust, critical judgmentalism, gluttony, and the list goes on and on, but I usually do it to the Lord. If I blurted out every one of them to others, they would probably end up praying for my salvation.

    Thank God, He forgives me and is not a gossip.

    • Cristal says:

      I, too, am thankful God forgives and isn’t a gossip, Larry! :)

      And I agree we should likely only reveal our weaknesses when Spirit led. Although, having people pray for me isn’t a bad thing!

      Nevertheless, I cannot begin to count the ways I’ve been changed and set free by someone else sharing his or her testimony of deliverance. So, I do believe we should ready and willing if the Lord prompts us to do so.

  3. Judy says:

    Hi Cristal,
    “Yet, I have not placed pillars of praise in his sight.”. Me neither. At least not obvious or often enough. So much of what God does in us is internal, and honestly I find it difficult to communicate sometimes. Maybe I’m just not being real enough. Maybe I don’t quite want to reveal the depths of my depravity. I think I’m only recently coming to terms with it myself. Thanks for a challenging post.
    Judy

    • Cristal says:

      I don’t believe we should blurt out everything internal for the sake of trying to be real. But, as you mentioned, there are times I hold back purely for the sake of hiding the depths of depravity. So, I stay shallow. :(

  4. Chrystal says:

    Sometimes I feel like my entire blog is me confessing some weakness. :) But yeah, there are plenty I keep hidden….

    • Cristal says:

      Same here, Chrystal! There are too many to lay them all out in the open. But, like we discussed in an earlier comment, if we’re Spirit-led we (and others) can find freedom by unveiling our weaknesses and flaws. Good to hear from you!

  5. Chiradeep says:

    Dear sister!

    Once more a very beautiful and helpful post. I read all the comments and your replies too… Your clear biblical understanding will definitely bless so many. May God bless you abundantly… And keep posting…

    • Cristal says:

      Thank you so very much the encouragement and gracious compliment! I am humbled by your words and blessed by your comments. Your participation in the discussion is certainly a blessing!

  6. Chiradeep says:

    Oh yeah, I forgot to say that as humans it is difficult for us to see our weaknesses but when the Holy Spirit talks personally & convicts us then we see them crystal clear through His word when we find it in places like: bible or blog or in a sermon or through person etc…

    Regards…

    • Cristal says:

      AMEN! When seeking to be more like Christ, I always find my Source to be His Spirit. He leads me in so many amazing ways when my eyes and ears are open and my heart is willing to be shaped and molded. As clay in the Potter’s hand. There is a sweet simplicity of fellowship developed in our relationship with God through that time. Thank you for pointing this out!

  7. Dicky says:

    God’s power is made perfect in our weakness.

  8. Although it is difficult to admit some of what is true about ourselves, it really is easier than trying to be fake. I can’t keep up with fake– it is too difficult to remember what I’ve said to each person or who I’ve pretended to be with each one. It may not always be pretty, but the truth really is simpler (as long as I don’t let my big nasty pride get in the way!). Thanks for sharing another great post!

  9. Love this post, Cristal! I admire your way of informing your sons of your weakness. I find it’s so important for children to understand we grown-ups are not perfect. I also love how you were able to relate the topic to our spiritual walk. I am constantly reminded that we will always have areas of weakness here on earth. I am so thankful that we can rely on our strong, perfect Creator. Thank you for the reminder that we need to admit to our weaknesses. Being real, honest, and genuine helps us maintain a deep relationship with God and healthy relationships with others.

    • Cristal says:

      Thank you, Danielle. I sure want to appear perfect (not only to my children but to everyone around me). It’s a struggle to admit weakness or even needs. But, as you pointed out, we need to be transparent if we want solid relationships with God and others.

  10. Thank you for sharing this! It can be so tempting to keep those parts of us hidden- to avoid the reality of our brokenness- to push aside or hide our weaknesses and put on a “good face” for our children. But they need to see us real- we need to admit our struggles- and point them to the one who loves us in our brokenness and uses us in spite of it. God bless you and thank you again for sharing from your heart.

    • Cristal says:

      Thank you for such an encouraging comment! I agree wholeheartedly. I don’t want my children leaving home as adults and thinking there’s something wrong with them with they are hit with trials, struggles and failures. Training them, here at home, will hopefully offer them the ability to independently lean on the Only One who can offer the comfort and healing.

  11. Katie says:

    Thank you Cristal for your wide-open honesty. It is the only way to a deeper knowing of Christ.

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