Keys to the Kingdom
As a kid in the 1960s, I liked to watch the CBS game show “To Tell the Truth” where four celebrity panelists questioned three contestants. One contestant always spoke the truth about himself/herself and the other two pretended and lied. This was very interesting to me and I was often surprised at who the “real” person out of the three turned out to be. Some of them were super-good liars and pretenders and were able to trick the celebrities and the viewing audience. God knows my name and frame and He knows my heart. He’s the God of all truth. He knows more about me than I do. I scratch my head and smile in the fact that He knows everything about me and loves me anyway! He knows the real me.
I find consolation in this scripture: “As a father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust” (Psalm 103:13,14 NKJV). Our heavenly Father has affection, mercy, and deep compassion for His children who revere and obey Him. He knows how we’re formed and all about our weaknesses and frustrations. He never gives up on us and is sympathetic to our difficulties. God’s not looking for perfect people, He’s looking for nonpretenders with perfect hearts.
Sometimes a vehicle ends up with a bent frame. An individual can also have a bent frame from all the hard knocks in life. But God knows what shape we’re in. And if we’re bent out of shape, He can restore it because God is in the business of restoration. He doesn’t throw any part away, He simply works it over and uses it for His glory. God isn’t generic; He’s specific and intentional and He knows what He’s doing. We can trust Him wholeheartedly because He’s proven mile after mile that His speedway record is unbeatable. If believers stay within their God-designated lane, we’ll never crash and burn.
A famous musician/entertainer owned a fleet of cars and, after he died in 1977, some of these cars were eventually showcased in Memphis. Although they were meticulously clean, not one little dent or ding was repaired because each imperfection was proof of use and told a story. Real believers can be compared to these unique vehicles. We may have some cracks in the sidewalls and dents on the body, but we’re willing to be used in the service of Christ Jesus. But it’s sure not a job for sissies! And there’s no place for a U-turn when we’re barreling down the Interstate. Once we get headed in the right direction toward heaven, what’s the sense of slowing down and turning back? In the song lyrics of Vestal Goodman, “I’m too near my heavenly home to turn back now!”
There’s no restoration job too big for God. He can fix a blown head gasket (mental issues) a misfiring cylinder (emotions), or rebuild an engine (physical needs). Just imagine seeing your vehicle up on the racks and, after a quick inspection by the most-qualified mechanic, he tells you, “She can’t be fixed, just tow ‘er to the junkyard.” God will never haul us away; He’ll always restore us if we’ll ask Him to do it. King David prayed, “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and make me willing to obey You” (Psalm 51:12 NLT). This was the prayer of a nonperfect regenerated man desiring a holy heart. Repentant prayers and changed hearts lead to God’s restoration. Our heavenly Father knows the real us (with all our imperfections, dents, and dings) but He still wants to use us if we’re willing to be humble and honest servants for the Kingdom of God.
The Key: Will the real you please stand, be restored, and get back on the road again?!