There was a time when some of you were just like that, but now your sins have been washed away and you have been set apart for God. You have been made right with God because of what the Lord Jesus Christ and the Spirit of God have done for you. I Corinthians 6:11

Our culture has become very health conscious these days, especially as concerns what are known as "toxins." I'm no biological expert, but my understanding is that these are man-made additives in foods that invade our bodies, and our bodies have no idea as to how to deal with them. Most often, they remain in us, acting as poisons to our system. Many Doctors recommend that we abstain from many, even all foods for a time in order to cleanse ourselves of these toxins. Large numbers of people respond to this guidance and seek to do just that as concerns their physical welfare. The question that comes to my mind is, what do we do concerning all the spiritual "toxins" that have invaded our hearts, minds, and being to this point, and only seek to increase in the future? We live in a toxic, fallen world, and it's poisons have invaded our lives. In our flesh, we have no idea of how to deal with them. How may we be "cleansed" of them? There is an answer; at the cross, at the feet of Christ. It's there we find the cleansing, the healing. It's there too, that we find the heart of the Father.

I recently heard singer Russ Taff speak of his journey to wholeness and healing in Christ. Raised by an abusive preacher/father, and equally abusive mother, Taff suffered terrible wounding to his mind and spirit. His father, because of his addiction, was forced to leave church after church. This brought rejection and deep shame to Taff. Coupled with great feelings of inadequacy, and the sense of not being "good enough," he sought fulfillment through his music. Eventually he found success and wide recognition because of it. Yet through it all, the shame and the feelings of inadequacy remained. He sought relief in alcohol, eventually becoming, as was his father, an alcoholic. All the while, he continued his singing to large crowds of believers, winning award after award. He said that he "hid" his pain and woundedness in that fame. He ran from a God he loved, but felt did not, could not love him. He hid in a lie, and lies are where we go to hide from His Truth.

Taff said he sought healing through counseling and therapy, and though it helped, it didn't really heal. The deep wounding remained. That all changed when he was asked to sing for an elderly preacher dying of cancer. As he entered the room with his guitar, he was paralyzed by what he saw. He said the man looked exactly like his abusive father. He recovered enough to sing several of the man's favorites, and this godly man then asked him to pray for him. Taff said he mumbled some kind of prayer, and then asked this dying preacher to pray for him. The man stood up, embraced him, and began to pray. As he did so, Taff broke down in tears, falling to his knees. As the man prayed, he stroked Taff's hair, and in response, Taff wept all the more. He did so because in the man's embrace, he felt, at long last, the unconditional healing love of the Father. He sensed the voice of the Father telling him to just let Him love him, and for him to receive the fullness of His love, and the healing and wholeness that came with it. As he was on his knees before that dying preacher, he knew he was also on his knees before His God, and His God received him, and healed him. On his knees, at the cross of Christ, in his brokenness, he found his healing. His wholeness. His unconditional love and acceptance.

Toxins. They've invaded all of us. Many, far too many, are living toxic lives. Lives that are poisoning us by inches. No matter how far back the invasion of those toxins have gone, there is healing to be found, received, and lived in. It's found at the cross, in the embrace of the King. In the washing of His blood. There, the poisons are cleansed. There, His great love is discovered. There it is that all of us must come. There is no toxin, no poison, that He cannot heal and cleanse. Come to His cross, kneel at His feet, enter into His embrace. Receive His healing. Be healed. Be washed. Be cleansed....right now.

Pastor O

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   May 2019   
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