January 24, 2007
“Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” 2 Corinthians 7:1
Friend to Friend
When my three children were young, it was a challenge to keep track of where they were at all times. My husband and I baby proofed the house as best we could, used gates and hoped for the best. I’ll never forget the day that Preston and Kennedy were accounted for in the play room, but Hunter had wandered off. I called for him, but got no response.
Curious, I headed for the front stair case and listened for his little two-year-old voice. I checked his bedroom – no Hunter. I checked Preston’s room – no Hunter. I checked Kennedy’s room – no Hunter. By now, my heart was racing and I was growing concerned. As I headed into my bedroom, I began to hear faint noises from the master bathroom.
Our bathroom mirror gave me all the information that I needed…Hunter had gotten into my red lipstick and it was everywhere! I wanted to laugh – I wanted to cry! He was unaware of my presence as he continued his creative red-lipstick artwork on my walls and on the linen closet door. On a whim, I ran quickly to get the camcorder.
Armed with stifled giggles and a video camera, I crossed the threshold of the bathroom and confronted my little chubby-cheeked ‘red lipstick-all-over-his-face’ boy. He immediately hid his scandalous red tool behind his back…thinking I was none the wiser. I asked him what he was doing, to which he replied “Nothing.” In my best trying-not-to-laugh mommy voice, I continued to ask him a series of questions and he continually denied any wrong doing.
This makes me wonder; how many times have I gone before the Lord in prayer holding my red lipstick behind my back. How many times have I – and do I – think I’m pulling one over on Him? Just as simply as I saw the tangible evidence of Hunter’s red face, God sees our hearts and knows what we’ve been up to. He sees pride, anger, gossip and bitterness. He sees un-forgiveness, un-confessed sins, the habits we cling to, the shows we watch and the literature we read that don’t honor Him. He sees our failures and lovingly longs for us to allow Him to clean up the mess we’ve made.
A few years back, after reading 2 Corinthians 7:1 and Psalm 51, and seeking God’s heart in prayer, I was inspired to write the following song:
Purify My Soul
By Gwen Smith
You know my heart and You know my ways
And yet You love me just the same
I know that You are able
You are God, it’s true
Help me Lord, just as I am, surrender all to You
Purify my soul
Cleanse my heart and mind
Restore to me Your gentle, loving arms
Purify my soul
So I can go and be a true reflection of Your holiness
Create in me a clean heart
And renew a right spirit within me
Cast me not away, Lord from Your presence
Restore to me the joy of Your salvation
Lord, Your love surrounds me – encompassing my soul
Mold me as a potter molds the clay
The freedom of forgiveness liberates my life
Renew in me a fire, in the name of Jesus Christ
© 2000 Audio 31 Music / Sunday Best Music (ASCAP)
Before the messes in our lives can be cleaned up, our red lipsticks need to be tossed. What is your red lipstick today? Are you ready to hand it over to God?
Dear God, please forgive me for the things in my life that I’ve kept from You or tried to hide from You. You deserve better from me. Help me eliminate everything in my life and in my heart that “contaminates my body and spirit.” I want my life to be a reflection of Your holiness. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Now it’s your turn
- Consider the red lipstick(s) that God may be calling you to toss aside.
- Seek Him in prayer and toss away!
- Do you trust that God’s plan for your life is better that your plan for your life?
- Ask God to strengthen your faith and purify your heart.
Gwen’s song “Purify My Soul” is found on her CD “Show Me the Way .”
Girlfriends in God, Inc.
Originally published Wednesday, 24 January 2007.