Posts Tagged ‘rags’

It felt like a dream, and it began with the low murmur of conversation.  The light was dim at first, as I strained to hear what was being said.  Though the voices were all around me, I didn’t sense that anyone was speaking directly to me.  As my eyes, or maybe it was my mind, came into greater focus, I could see that I was in the midst of a crowded room.  I noticed that the floors were made of rough wooden planks, and that the people were dressed in ancient garments, that almost looked like togas.

A wave of foreboding swept over me, as I immediately felt out of place.  These were not my people, this was not my time, and this was not my home.  I was afraid to make eye contact; afraid that if someone looked into my soul, they would discern my trespass.  So, I kept my head down, and slowly shuffled in the vain hope of finding an exit before I was recognized.

I noticed that all of the feet were dusty and sandaled, including my own: but the robes were an impossibly bright white that almost gleamed against the backdrop of the wood grains.  As I considered the brilliance of my own garment, a fresh wave of anxiety swirled in me, knowing that this robe could not possibly belong to me.  Alas, they were sure to see that I was both an imposter, and a thief. 

My heart pounded against my temples, as I tried to pick up my pace, but without raising my head, I clumsily ran into a long table, filled with food.  I cringed, both in pain, and at the knowledge that I may have just drawn attention to myself.  I held my breath in anticipation of being found out; but when the moment passed, I resumed my plodding escape.

As I considered the bountiful table, I sensed that this feast was a celebration, and somehow I understood that it was a wedding banquet.  This made my sense of intrusion grow more profound.  Finding a seam between the people, and the tables, I worked my way to what I hoped would be the periphery of the room.  But my wisp of optimism evaporated suddenly, when a set of feet appeared directly in front of me, and I shuddered to a stop.

Though they didn’t look any different than all the others I’d been gazing at, they were squarely in front of me, and I could feel the eyes of their owner upon me.  Again, there was a knowing that these weren’t just anyone’s feet, they were His feet.  I began to tremble, and felt as though I ought to fall to my knees, but not wanting to draw any more attention, I simply stood there, shaking.  I tried to lift my eyes to Him, but felt certain that if I did, I might well burst into flames.  Like a fox caught in a snare, I stood paralyzed.

After a painfully long moment, He said, “You don’t feel as though you belong, do you,” in a voice that was softer and warmer than I expected.

Shaking my head silently, I affirmed Him.

“Do you think you ought to leave?” He asked gently.

Again, I nodded in agreement.

Reaching His arm toward me, I took the cuff of His robe, as He led me to what I assumed was an exit.  But as He opened the door, I realized that it was coat room (i.e. a place where guests could hang their cloaks or other outer garments).  A renewed sense of shame rolled through me, as this was an acknowledgement that these clothes I was wearing were not my own.

Stepping across the dimly lit threshold, I immediately sensed the vastness of what had appeared to be a closet from the outside.  As I raised my eyes, they strained from the brightness, and as they adjusted, I could see row upon row of clothes hangers, suspended from rods that ran along the towering walls, which extended as far as I could see.  And upon each hanger there was a set of filthy, tattered rags, that barely had enough form to cling to it.

He gave me several moments to take this scene in, and then tenderly asked, “Do you know which ones are yours?”

Turning my face toward Him, I tearfully whispered, “No Lord, I do not”.

Reaching His hand out, He lifted my chin, and as our eyes met He compassionately said, “Neither do I”.

The Lord does not prize our righteousness (Isaiah 64:6), He seeks hearts that are truly His (2Chron.16:9).

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