Not Clean

The Lord meets me where I am, and His pinpointed love always overwhelms me. Such was the story at 5:30am while I was studying His word last week. 

Backstory – I’ve recently officially accepted God’s call to teach the Bible. I’ve felt it for a long time and I’ve taught consistently. However, walking in discreet obedience versus publicly proclaiming that call are very different. Publicly proclaiming opens you up to criticism, doubt and fear. Each of these I felt this particular morning. “I cannot BELIEVE I’ve announced that You’ve called me to do this. I am SO NOT self-disciplined enough. I still struggle with so much sin. My closest loved ones know me too well and could expose my mess.” 

This is NOT a beauty from ashes, feel good about myself in Christ post, though.  Let’s get back to the Bible.

During my study time, I happened down a research rabbit trail, looking for insight on “consecrating.” As I studied this word and theme (for teaching), the Lord lead me to 1 Samuel 16. It’s the beautiful story of David’s anointing.

“…Consecrate yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice.’ And he [Samuel] consecrated Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice.” 1 Samuel 16:5b

So Jesse and his (first) seven sons were consecrated, or CLEANED for the sacrificial ritual about to happen. Samuel, God’s servant, even cleaned them and deemed them consecrated.  After all that, though, God doesn’t choose one who was CLEAN and READY for the sacrifice and subsequent anointing.

“Then Samuel said to Jesse, ‘Are all of your sons here?’ And he said, ‘There remains the youngest, but behold, he is keeping the sheep.'” 1 Samuel 16:11

As we know, Samuel tells Jesse to call in David – directly from the field. Dirty and stinky from working with animals, and sweaty from rushing home. And then – at that moment – without any cleansing, Samuel anoints Him. HOW DID I MISS THAT BEFORE? We are so familiar with the story of the humble shepherd boy, but how have I missed this part about CONSECRATION?

He wasn’t outwardly cleansed like the rest of his family. Instead, God took Him exactly how He was. The anointing was more important than the cleansing.

God told me that morning – yes, you are not clean enough. You never will be. But your readiness and your heart are what I need. I will cleanse from there. I will take care of the rest.

May we be ready. While spiritual cleansing is certainly important, may we always realize that we will NEVER be clean enough. Only when our hearts are willing to accept our lack of ability, thus TOTAL DEPENDENCE on Christ’s atonement + the Holy Spirit’s power, will we be ready to accept God’s high calling.

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