"PURE"- 1) Free from Contamination; 2) Containing nothing unnecessary; 3) Without faults; 4) Full-strength. Free from impurities.
Is there a part of my life that needs God's restoration and healing?
"Lord, on the way to goodness, when we stumble, hold us, when we fall, lift us up, when we are hard pressed by evil, deliver us, when we turn from what is good, turn us back, and bring us at last to your glory."
Mary Batchelor, England
When I was growing up, my sister and I shared a great deal of time playing outside. We enjoyed letting our imaginations carry us away from the common life of daily living - like having a mother who required us to make our beds everyday and wash the dishes, dry them, and put them away. (Of course, I give myself away - when I was young there were no automatic dishwashers in many homes. Well, on second thought my sister and I became the household dishwashers!)
In between doing our daily routine, we found plenty of time to dream up new games in the backyard and the vacant lot behind our house.
On one particular day, much to our delight, we found a new large pile of dirt that had been dumped on the back lot. We quickly grabbed the hose and our little buckets and shovels. We were off to make a concoction we called "gooshey-gobble." All it was, in reality, was a mixture of dirt and water that we stirred into a paste-like mixture. Right in the middle of stirring up a fresh batch of our "batter" our mother, who was looking for us, happened upon the scene.
I don't ever remember my mom moving quite so fast to stop one of our activities. "Out of here," she exclaimed. "Go straight to the bathroom and take off all your clothes."
To make a long, dirty story short and clean, I'll just tell you that we were playing in a huge pile of manure. Evidently someone in the neighborhood had dumped the excess fertilizer on the lot and what we thought was an "odd" smelling pile of dirt turned out to be something much worse! Certainly not an appropriate playground for two little girls. Several hours later, we emerged from the bathroom scrubbed like two washboards. From the tops of our heads to the bottoms of our feet we were disinfected with everything known by my mother to clean up two dirty and smelly little girls.
As I've studied the life of David, I have been reminded of the lengths my mother went to in order to restore two grubby, fertilizer-covered girls to their former pristine condition. A lot of washing and cleansing went on that day - and a lot of washing and cleansing went on in David's life, too.
The fact is that as God nurtures the soil of our lives so we are able to bloom into what He has planned for us, there are two key elements required. One is forgiveness, which washes away our sins immediately. But there is also another element that is required and it is "restoration."
God forgives me by His redemptive grace. He washes me. Cleanses me. But then, He goes one step further. He restores me to the beautiful, and yes, pure person He planned for me to be in the first place.
I want to add, once God has cleansed me, He wants me to lift my head up because I no longer have to walk filled with shame. I no longer have to hide for fear of what others will say about me. I'm not dirty anymore. God took care of cleaning me up!
That's what God did for David. When the seed God planted in David's conscience began to show life and call him to repentance, David admitted his sin and God forgave him. But then, thank God, He began to restore David's life by planting His feet on the path of life, or as David wrote, "He restoreth my soul" (Psalm 23).
I don't know if you have ever seen a swarm of locusts devouring plants. It is quite a sight. Within minutes these small bugs can destroy a once vibrant plant - leaving it looking like a death stalk. In the book of Joel, this Old Testament prophet spoke about what God does when the "locusts" of sin come in and devour our healthy lives. This is a promise I hope you will claim today if you feel that your life is in such a shambles it can't ever be restored. Here's what Joel 2: 25 (Amplified Bible) say, "I will restore and replace for you the years that the locust has eaten." Isn't that a beautiful promise by God? His restoration will give us back what sin has taken away!
How thankful I am that God doesn't just forgive me. He also scrubs me up. Washes me clean. And gives me back the shining glory of His redeeming love. No wonder David could say, "Let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice" (Psalm 68: 3, K.J.V.).
"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
I John 1: 9, King James Version
Dorothy Valcàrcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus
P.S. My book, When A Woman Meets Jesus, is now available wherever books are sold and on the internet at www.amazon.com, Christianbook.com, or by calling toll-free, 1-800-Christian. You can also go to www.whenawomanmeetsjesus.com and purchase the book through Paypal for $8.00. Or by calling Transformation Garden at 1-888-397-4348.
For more from Dorothy, please visit transformationgarden.com.