Today I remembered a vision that a woman shared a long time ago. She saw this beautiful bride sitting in a locked room with a straight face. The door was rattling and banging as the bridegroom so desperately wanted to be with the one he loved so much. He was calling her name, begging her to open the door— and in the midst of this tragedy, the bride pointed to the marriage certificate hanging on the wall and she said, “All is well.”
You can interpret this in so many different ways, she was sharing this in the context of the state of the church— but today God brought this back out and showed me a different aspect of this story.
I was driving home thinking about all of this and ended the night with a series of questions that were partnered with a bit of healthy frustration. I asked:
How do you get someone to be as equally passionate, if not more in a relationship?
In other words, I was trying to figure out how God managed to get it through my thick skull.
Truth be told, I had a problem with looking at people in the eyes for a long time. I remember when Jacob Reeve first prayed for me at the Valencia House of Prayer, Jacob was staring dead into my eyes for about a minute (felt like an hour). I was so uncomfortable, and it was cause I was insecure about myself.
Reality is, because I was insecure about myself— I obviously had things I was ashamed about. And the deeper reality was that since I had things I was ashamed about— I wasn’t able to look at God in the eyes without feeling scared or feeling like crap.
Tying it together, I can’t remember how or when I got it. When did I unlock the door of shame so that I could allow God to truly love the hell out of me (literally)? When did I realize that my refusal to let go of my false insecurities and shame, was taking a heavy toll on my love relationship with God? How did He get it through my thick skull?
Also, how freaking frustrating—
It’s one of those moments when you remember something embarrassing while laying on your bed. Then you start having a seizure, kicking your legs and punching your bed because you’re still embarrassed by the former memory~
Jesus was trying to look at me and love the hell out of me, but I kept refusing because I was being selfish and prideful in my insecurities.
And the more frustrating part was when I reflected on the broader aspect of it all:
Here’s a God that loves me so extravagantly, so immensely, so unconditionally— and I was reciprocating half-ass love rooted out of insecurity. Whats worse, I remember thinking that this was all okay! That my relationship with God was good or healthy or normal or something like that~ Which leads me to that first question…
How did you manage to knock me out of my luke warmness? How did you manage to shift the tides of passion in my heart?
I imagined how heartbreaking it would be to want to love my wife so badly, but it just wasn’t happening because she wasn’t able to receive my passion for her. I’d tell her she’s beautiful, she’d say no. I’d tell her I love her, she’d ask why. I’d look at her in the eyes, and she’d look away. And I realized that there was a period of time where I was doing that to Jesus.
But when and how did it all change?
Perhaps it was the moment that I realized that what God was saying over my life weren’t just opinions. Maybe I realized that the same voice that was saying that I was worthy, beautiful, and all together lovely— was the same voice that spoke the world into creation. Yeah, maybe I realized that it wasn’t merely opinions, but what He was saying was truth and unmovable fact.
Many of us are still captives to a former life that doesn’t exist. We’re chained to sins that nobody in heaven even remembers. Paul writes that we’ve made an enemy of God in our minds. And now I understand even more that as we choose to comfortably and pridefully embrace our shame, instead of humbly receiving the love and truth that God declares over our lives— we constantly reject the lover that’s begging us to unlock the door.
And I realize that the moment we allow the full love of God to overtake us, we reciprocate back in beautiful passion— passion thats fueled by the same love that was poured into us.
That’s what overflow looks like.