Saturday, June 21, 2008

Martyrs and Thieves

A dear friend emailed me the lyrics to a song today in relation to something we were discussing. I’ve read it several times today and listened to it as well. I’ve found myself within these words. I can see so much of me in the following lyrics.

Martyrs and Theives
By: Jennifer Knapp

There's a place in the darkness that I used to cling to
It presses harsh hope against time
In the absence of martyrs there's a presence of thieves
Who only want to rob you blind
They steal away any sense of peace
Though I'm a king I'm a king on my knees
And I know they are wrong when they say I am strong
As the darkness covers me

There are ghosts from my past who've owned more of my soul
Than I thought I had given away
They linger in closets and under my bed
And in pictures less proudly displayed
A great fool in my life I have been
Have squandered till pallid and thin
Hung my head in shame and refused to take blame
For the darkness I know I've let win

Can you hear me?

Well I've never been much for the baring of soul
In the presence of any man
I'd rather keep to myself all safe and secure
In the arms of a sinner I am
Could it be that my worth should depend
By the crimson stained grace on a hand
And like a lamp on a hill Lord I pray in Your will
To reveal all of You that I can

So turn on the light and reveal all the glory
I am not afraid
To bare all my weakness, knowing in meekness
I have a kingdom to gain
Where there is peace and love in the light, in the light
Oh I am not afraid
To let Your light shine bright in my life, in my life
Oh I am not afraid

There's a place in the darkness that I used to cling to
It presses harsh hope against time...

This has been much of my journey. I’m not ok with being a sinner. I don’t like to admit that I am. But, I AM a sinner…we all are. None of us is perfect. None of us deserves grace…no, not one. But, somehow, be it my personality, my conditioning, something I learned, whatever it is, I have believed that it wasn’t ok to be imperfect. So, I pretended I wasn’t. I would hide away my faults and failings and not speak of them as if they didn’t exist. In the third verse of this song Jennifer Knapp says, “Well, I’ve never been much for the baring of soul in the presence of any man. I’d rather keep to myself all safe and secure in the arms of a sinner I am”. I was that way, and I still act that way at times. I’d rather let someone’s impression of me as a “good girl” stand than bare my soul and truthfully say that I struggle, I fail, and I fall.

“In the absence of martyrs there’s a presence of thieves who only want to rob you blind. They steal away any sense of peace though I’m a king, I’m a king on my knees. And I know they are wrong when they say I am strong as the darkness covers me”.

I’ve allowed my arrogance and pride to steal time from me. I’ve allowed it to keep me from asking questions for fear that someone would think I didn’t have all the answers. “A great fool in my life I have been, have squandared ‘til palid and thin. Hung my head in shame and refused to take blame for the darkness I know I’ve let win”. I’ve wandered in the wilderness for years because I was unwilling to say, “Lord, I have sinned. I’ve been disobedient and I’ve wandered from Your path. Please, forgive me and draw me back into the plan You have for me”. I’ve foolishly let the world in and let it steal my innocence and my joy in the Lord. I still do that…we all do…we’re human, it’s what we do.

But, we can’t stay there. We can’t accept it as if it’s enough. We must let the light in to expose the darkness in our lives. We must continually pull the weeds of the world from the garden of our hearts. In the glaring light of scripture and God’s presence, darkness is revealed. It’s our job to allow that light to shine into the darkest corners of our hearts. It’s our job to bare our weakness before the Lord and those who would hold us accountable and work towards being a better reflection of Him.

“So turn on the light and reveal all the glory. I am not afraid to bare all my weakness, knowing in meeknessI have a kingdom to gain. Where there is peace and love in the light, in the light. Oh I am not afraid to let Your light shine bright in my life, in my life. Oh I am not afraid.”
Lord, let that be my prayer today. Let me not be afraid to let Your light into the darkest parts of me. May I not be afraid to face those weaknesses in my life and pull the sin out by its root. May I learn to be humble and unafraid to share my weaknesses and be held accountable by those who love me.

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