How clean are you? Are you someone who is really tidy or.. not so much?

Let’s ask these questions a bit differently. If we were to send a
group of people your house right now, with no warning, we were all
able to see your bedroom in its current state, would you be
embarrassed with how messy it is, or are you content with its
cleanliness – right now.

I’m going to be brutally honest right now. I am not a tidy person, I
like things to be clean but I’m awful at keeping them that way. I
imagine I’m not alone. I will say this though, I’m a lot better than I
was when I was in high school, I credit pretty much all of this to
marriage. But man, I remember my room when I was in high school, I was
a once a year cleaner and the things I would find.. Oh my.

Now, that’s changed a lot. For the most part, we keep a pretty tidy
house. Typically everything has a home and a place for it to go. But
for the longest time we had one area that was my domain, my place,
where when I picked something up, it’s where it went.

We called this magical place the “junk drawer!” Oh, the junk drawer
was a wonderful place, you could open it and find things you didn’t
even know you owned.

How many of you guys have a junk drawer at home? My loving wife has
dismantled and repurposed our junk drawer, now I just place stuff on
the magic counter. I put random things there and it mysteriously gets
put in the right place by the next day. Magic. (I hope my wife doesn’t
read that.)

But what I loved and Jessica hated about the junk drawer is its use.
In a pinch, you could throw everything in it and your house would look
all clean and put together again. But truly all the junk drawer did
was hide the mess we had, it may look clean but when you dug deeper
there was a mess just out of sight.

This was true of my junk drawer at home but also very true about how
we live life. A lot of times we go through life looking clean and put
together. When someone asks “How are you?” we immediately respond,
“Fine, how are you?” When in reality that couldn’t be further from the
truth. You see we wear a smile, a laugh, we joke and poke fun when we
are a mess on the inside. We have a junk drawer overflowing with pain,
doubts, insecurities, loneliness, depression and anxiety. But on the
outside, we hold our head high and hope no one can see the cracks in
the mask we wear.

And look, I get it. I’ve been there. I don’t know what you’re hiding
or why you’re hiding, but I get it. And it’s ok.

But here’s what I know, what I believe to be true, and it’s such good news.

In Psalm 139:14-16, we read this:

For you created my inmost being;

you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;

your works are wonderful,

I know that full well.

My frame was not hidden from you

when I was made in the secret place,

when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.

Your eyes saw my unformed body;

all the days ordained for me were written in your book

before one of them came to be.

Here’s what I take out of that – God knows you, and knows what you’re
going through.

The things we try and hide from those around us, God already knows all
about them, He knows how they turn out, He knows our journey, and He
still loves us, and sent His Son to die on the cross for us, so that
these things we hide don’t have to control us.

I remember the nervousness I felt when I first asked Jessica to go out
with me. I’ll admit, it’s been a while so I don’t remember all the
details but I remember being on the phone with her and knowing what I
was going to ask but struggling to gather the courage to do so.

Finally, I got it out and she said yes.

Anyone ever had something like that happen? Where you’re all worried
about how someone will take something you need to say and finally you
get it out, that feeling that follows? Absolute rest.

What do you feel when you finally confess something you’ve been obsessing on?

Relief. Freedom. Peace.

So when I read that God knows me, before I was born, He knew me, He
knows what I’m going through, and still loves me and wants me, when I
read that the things I try and keep hidden and covered up in my mind
He has already accepted, you and I should feel such immense peace, and
freedom, and relief.

Romans 5:8 says

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still
sinners, Christ died for us.

When we keep things bottled up, hidden, we can spend so much energy
and thought, getting into lies and half-truths, trying to keep things
hidden. It can control us and eventually can destroy us.

But God already knows, God has already paid the price for us.

The truth is this, it’s ok to not be ok. It’s ok to have things in our
lives that we’d rather not broadcast, or maybe we’re not ready to deal
with and so we keep it hidden, we work to keep it out of mind and out
of our life.

It’s ok to not be ok.

But God loves you too much for you to stay that way.

God has bought you healing from it and knows you’re going to be ok
someday. It’s ok to not be ok, but God doesn’t want you to stay that

The truth is, God knows your pain. He recognizes your hurt. He sees
when you are aching when this life is too much for you to be able to
handle. When those you love reject you and manipulate you. He sees
when His child hurts and hates life because of it. He sees it and He
hates it.

There’s a moment in the New Testament that I want to end with today.

It takes place in Mark 5:24-34

Jesus is on His way to heal a little girl who is sick, there is a
massive crowd surrounding Him and following Him. Everyone close
together, bumping into each other, no social distancing at all.

In that crowd was a woman who had suffered with bleeding for twelve
years. She would have been considered unclean, she would have been
outcasted and disgraced because of her condition. It says she had
spent everything she had on doctors and healers yet only got worse.
Can you imagine what it would have been like to have been this woman?

Her bleeding was hidden but still there. On the outside she looked
normal and likely pretended everything was fine. But inside, she was
crushed and overwhelmed, her problem remained persistently even when
others couldn’t see it.

When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and
touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his
clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and
she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering. 30 At once
Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in
the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?” 31 “You see the people
crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask,
‘Who touched me?’ ” 32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had
done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and
fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth.
34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace
and be freed from your suffering.”

She had the faith to reach out to Jesus. I’m asking you to do the same
today. Whatever it is that you’re hiding, that’s you’re keeping
hidden, whatever it is that you can’t stop obsessing over. Give it to
Jesus, He already knows and He’s already paid for it. Trust Him, place
your faith in Him. He is healer, He is almighty, He is comforter, He
is the Way, Truth, and Life. He is the only one with the power to
overcome. Bring it before Him and believe in Him today.

Jeff Evans
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