Gleaning insight from Howard E. Butt, Jr. this morning, I was surprised to read something I had failed to notice before…ever. I was so surprised that I had missed this analogy, that I looked it up to verify that it even existed.
II Corinthians 3:3 …you are a letter from Christ….
Other analogies were secure in my mind–yeast, salt of the earth, even this little light of mine–hide it under a bushel? NO!
In an age where a thought is only half formulated before being launched across the cyber-universe, there is no comparison to reading words that someone painstakingly penned for your eyes only. There is nothing like the thrill of unearthing a hand-addressed envelope in the mailbox, the feel of a piece of stationery in the fingers, the few minutes of intimate connection as your own world fades and the words of a loved one far away etch themselves onto your heart. It is, dare I say it, a treasure.
And we are such treasures.
You are a letter from Christ. I am a letter from Christ.
Read me world!
What does my letter say?
Does it say patient, loving mother, emulating forgiveness, effusing godly joy, radiating Christ’s grace? Or does it say haggard, distracted master of chaos, bitter, uncertain, lost?
Does it say I spend my time well, training my children, serving my husband, encouraging God’s family, loving the lost. Or does it spell out that my time, my priorities, are elsewhere?
Does it tell of a life devoted to Him, or does it tell of a life devoted to self with Him in the background?
Does it shout forgiven? Or does it shout better-than-thou?
Does it read grace? Or does it read making my own way?
I know what my letter could say, if Christ had not written it. I know it would be filled with failure, regrets, bad choices. I know it would tell of bitterness, resentment, lack of forgiveness, lack of trust. I know the positives would be buried beneath the rubble of broken promises, broken dreams, broken relationships.
But Christ wrote my letter, and it is written in blood…
It says only one word:
I can walk out into the world, a world that knows my faults, knows my failures, witnesses them anew, and I can hold up my letter, my letter from Christ.
But with my letter comes responsibility. I must live for the Author of my letter. If my letter is a recommendation, then everything I say or do will reflect on the Recommender. If I shout at my children, dress for the world, disprespect my husband, and bow at the feet of bartenders, what am I saying about the Author? If I worship Favre over faith, image over others, self over sacrifice, how will my letter stand out? Who will want to read about how Christ eliminated my filth if they see me reveling in that same filth?
The letter is worthy. If I live the life of the gratefully forgiven, the world will see my letter and know it is the genuine thing. I must remember who has written my letter. I must tell my story, share my joy, live the love, be the letter.
In a world of email, texting, and cyber-scribing, I hold my letter high. I am a letter from Christ.
Linked up to Walk with Him Wednesdays at Holy Experience.