But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image. 2 Corinthians 3:16-18 (NLT)
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
Today we wrap up the old year and for most of us we will not sleep again before welcoming in the new year. Earlier in the week we talked about what a great juncture this is for spiritual reflection that helps us identify adjustments we can commit to for the coming year. Today's Scripture begins with the words, "whenever someone turns to the Lord." For someone who has never turned to the Lord before, what better time than right now for turning to him. What an amazing adjustment it is to go from being unconnected to the Lord to being connected to him by believing in Christ for the forgiveness of sins. The adjustment of turning to the Lord is all about being connected to him so that he can accomplish the lifelong process of adjusting our lives more and more to all that he has in mind for us.
"Seeing" our need for a Savior who can reconnect us to God so that we exist for him and not ourselves is the issue. We are naturally blind to this need and without Divine intervention we would never be able to see it. The key part of today's highlighted Scripture is the phrase, "the veil is taken away." The meaning and significance of these words is so rich and full, volumns could be written on them. The imagery begins with the divide that exists between humanity and God apart from the cross of Christ (Matthew 27:51). It then moves to imagery of "veiled hearts" for those who remain under the old covenant (which is the immediate context of our 2 Corinthians passage). It then moves to the imagery of the veil that is taken away whenever someone turns to the Lord which we have be talking about.
We are not looking at a sequence where one turns to the Lord and then the veil is removed. Turning to the Lord is an event and the removing of the veil is a significant part of that event all the way through it. The Holy Spirit works (Divine intervention) and the "lifting of the veil" enables us to "see" our need for a Savior who can reconnect us to God so that we can exist for him and not ourselves. Then the "lifting of the veil" enables us to see Christ and respond to him and the provison of forgiveness of sins that he offers. Then "the lifting of the veil" enables us to see even more completely the fullness of the relationship with Christ that is now ours and the fullness of the life he has called us to.
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
Lord, thank you for the work of your Spirit that has freed me from spiritual blindness. Thank you for forgiving my sins, putting me in a relationship with Christ, and setting me on the path of living for you and not myself. Forgive, me for all the ways I seemly slip back behind the veil. Open my eyes wide to all you have in mind for me and show me the adjustments you want to make in my life in the new year. Amen!
Posted on Thu, December 31, 2015
by Alan Porter