“I am exposing so that I can heal.”
This short sentence was all that flooded my head during a worship service a few weeks ago. My heart was broken, I was crying, it had come to this.
We are in a season of exposure, and I dare say it is about to be in full effect.
Earlier this year I had a strong impression that we were in a grace period for introspection and self-correction. Yahweh was dealing with us in private to prepare us for public ministry. I was torn up and doubled over under the weight of conviction on more than one occasion for the year. Yahweh was perusing the deepest, darkest, most inward and private parts of my soul to shine light on misconceptions, inconsistencies, and flat-out wrong thinking that was fueling a lot of my sinful dispositions. And I’ve heard similar testimonies from people I’m connected to.
I felt that season drawing to a close, and when we moved into the season of exposure, my heart broke. I don’t like seeing people hurt. I’m a softie by nature, I cry often and for almost any reason. So when the Holy Spirit arrested my song and filled my mouth with the message that He was exposing to bring healing, I grew sad, because expose almost always guarantees pain. But as is with any of my Holy Spirit encounters, He leaves the message for me to ponder over a period of time. Tonight it came back full force and in my face. It occurred to me that there are two sets of people who need to be wary of their postures during this season of exposure: the ones being exposed, and the ones watching the exposure take place.
If you find yourself exposed, open bare; if your sins have been called to the forefront and put on seeming display for everyone to see; if your heart is broken because you’ve lost your influence and have been brought low in the place you once had a platform, your posture is important.
Yahweh never exposes to shame, He exposes to heal. He doesn’t exploit weaknesses – that’s the devil’s work. But there comes a point in time when you cannot be elevated beyond a current state if you refuse to deal with your issues. We all have issues yes, but when we have been trusted with influence, with followers, with souls, we have to realize that our lives are not our own. When we surrender our will, we surrender our experiences. When you stand before Yahweh and agree to partner with Him in purpose to further His Kingdom here on earth, you also agree to do your best to walk circumspect before Him. Understand that when we allow our pride to rule us, He will not stand by while we mismanage the resources He has entrusted to us. We cannot expect to get away with what the other person gets away with. To whom much is given, much is required. And if you don’t hold up your end of the bargain, Yahweh will not allow you to misrepresent His kingdom. He will not allow His agenda to be handicapped by your refusal to deal with your sin. He will not allow you to drive the souls attached to your purpose to Hell. He will intercept your dysfunction with the light of day to bring you to your senses, and when He does, it’s important that you yield.
This is your posture: YIELDED.
This is not the time to justify your mistakes with fleshly reasoning. This is not the time to dig an even deeper hole for yourself. This is not the time to play on the emotions of others and be a victim. This is not the time to cause your followers to abandon sound faith-filled principles in support of your sin.
This is the time to allow Yahweh to process you in the public space He sees fit. It will hurt, and you may have regrets, but rest assured that there’s grace and forgiveness for you there.
Yahweh does not expose our sin openly to drive us deeper into the arms of shame. You must be careful not to allow the enemy to bring you so low in your self-appraisal that you feel you are exempt from grace. The bridge that Yahshua built with the blood He shed on Calvary spans every gap created by sin. This means that no matter how consumed you may be with your guilt, grace is greater. Yahweh is able. Allow this season of expose to sharpen you and shape you. Yahweh is a Father, and as such He WILL correct us when we are wrong – not to break us, but to demonstrate His love for us. Do not allow the enemy to infiltrate your mind with lies. Yahweh loves whom He chastens, and He cares enough about you to save you from yourself. If the platform proves too big for your character to sustain, He will remove it to preserve your soul.
Don’t allow the fall to stop you from getting back up. Your contribution to this walk is too valuable for you to be shrouded in shame and guilt. Draw closer to Yahweh during this time, and allow Him to address the brokenness in your foundation that caused the corruption in the first place.
And as these lives are being adjusted in a very public space, those of us witnessing must fight to remain compassionate.
Yahweh fights our battles, I assure you. He shows up in rooms where we’ve been belittled, underestimated, and mistreated, and will draw silence from our enemies. When he does this, we feel protected, we feel loved, and we feel covered. But there are times when the person who has done us wrong is a person of faith. It’s easy to pity a person that does not believe, but when we are called to have compassion for our wayward brothers and sisters, it’s a different story.
Pity is a sense of sadness for another person’s dilemma that is fueled or motivated by conditioned softness. In short, you are moved to pity people simply because on a base level, we don’t like to see fellow human beings suffer. But compassion is the sadness you feel when you understand a person’s pain, when you perceive their perspective, when you can conceptualize why they are the way they are. Compassion is more intimate, more personal, and invokes a deeper sense of obligation to assist. It’s easier to pity someone because there’s a veil that exists between you and the other person due to a lack of shared experience. Compassion requires humility. To be humble is to surrender what you think you know in favor of what is actually there. Humility is laying down your perspective in favor of another’s.
When the person who wronged us is in a season of exposure, we need to pray for compassion, not pity. I am aware that faith hurt often runs long and deep, but so does Yahshua’s grace. If it exists, that means it’s within our reach.
To the people witnessing the exposure, this is your posture: COMPASSIONATE.
It goes against everything we’ve been taught by culture as most Kingdom principles do. We want to gloat because Yahweh is finally inflicting a measure of pain on that person that equates to the measure of pain they inflicted on us, and the world will fully support you in your decision to do so. It’s a slippery slope. Justification makes you prideful. Take care not to harbor gratification for so long that you evict love.
While we may no longer be called to relationship with these people anymore, we have to remember that they’re still children of Yahweh and deserving of love. The world will do its job in ripping people of faith to shreds. They will drag exposed leaders through the mud. They will nullify their voice and eradicate their influence if it’s possible. They will shame them so frequently and so harshly that they may be driven into the darkest time of their life. When this happens, we need to remember that there’s grace for them too. If they’ve been rejected by the world and Believers alike for their hypocrisy, then their souls are stateless. Any soul not secured by Yahshua’s blood is a lost soul. Yahshua died so that no soul is stateless. He died so that every soul could have a home when their own corruption has landed them in the worst of circumstances.
We cannot stand and gloat while our brothers and sisters are being dealt with openly. The fact that they’re being dealt with at all is proof of Yahweh’s love for them. Just as the family members of someone in surgery sit in the waiting area where they are physically helpless and pray, so we must do for our fellow believers who have been cut open openly so that Yahweh might bring healing. We must pray that they remain steadfast in their belief in the goodness of Yahweh. We must pray that they submit to the process and allow Yahweh to root up every dead thing that is producing poisonous fruit in their lives. We must pray that they survive their season of expose, and are not consumed by it. And we must pray for our own hearts, that we would remain yielded to the leading of the Holy Spirit. We must pray for hearts that forgive and love in spite of exposed flaws. We must pray for the character of Yahshua, and the wherewithal to remind our lost brothers and sisters of who they really are, in spite of their sin.
It could be any one of us under fire, and just because it’s not us doesn’t mean we have the right to be self-righteous. We are to pray for one another, in good times and bad.
Yahweh, help us all to look inward when the enemy wants nothing more than for us to remain distracted by what’s happening around us. Help us to have the courage to take your hand and walk into the parts of our hearts that house the deepest dysfunction, and need the most healing. Help us to extend and receive grace in the place of retribution and shame. Help us to posture properly before your throne, no matter our individual states.