Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Hiding Behind the Baggage

Hiding Behind the Baggage
Alesha Leveritt

In reading I Samuel this morning, I was a little disappointed. I always count on my morning scripture reading for inspiration and an “idea” that sparks my mind for the rest of the day. And this morning, I just didn't get it – at least not at first.

The scriptures were I Samuel 9-12: the story of Saul's selection as king. Interesting passages, but nothing jumped out at me until I started writing out some prayer and reflection about my own life. I was talking (whining, really) to God about the fact that I would never achieve what I wanted to in my walk with Christ because of all my baggage. And then suddenly, my memory triggered back to this:

I Samuel 10:20-22 (NIV)

      1. When Samuel gathered all the tribes of Israel, the tribe of Benjamin was picked.

      2. Samuel had them pass by in family groups, and Matri's family was picked. Then he had each man of Matri's family pass by, and Saul son of Kish was picked. But when they looked for Saul, they could not find him.

      3. They asked the Lord, “Has Saul come here yet?”
        The Lord said, “Yes. He's hiding behind the baggage.

Yep, there it was. Perhaps the greatest excuse for lost Christian potential. The BAGGAGE. We all have it. Of course, some of our baggage is prettier than others. You may have floral baggage with filigrees (something beautiful that you have a hard time leaving behind). My baggage looks a little more like the gym bag that got left in the back of the pick up truck in the rain (story for another time, but trust me, it's UGLY). I have it. You have it. He has it. She has it. We've all got BAGGAGE! And it creates a very convenient little place to hide when we are afraid of what God is calling us to do.

Saul didn't think he could be king. He'd started out that day searching for Daddy's lost donkeys. Donkey-hunter to king is a pretty big leap for anybody, much less with no preparation. Yes, Saul had prophesied, but only once. Yes, his heart had been changed, but that did NOT mean an absence of fear. Here was Saul, donkey-hunter, tall to the point of being awkward, and after one training session, he was to be king? Saul counted every failure he had ever experienced, every time he had made the wrong choice, every time he had spoken too soon and appeared foolish, every time someone had told him he wouldn't amount to much. He packed them in some bags and camped out behind them. The baggage was real, but more importantly, so was Saul's fear. He used the baggage to build a wall to keep him away from the destiny God had planned.

How many of us are guilty of that same thing? God calls you to do something, and you say, “Oh, no Lord. I can't possibly do that. I'm a failure. I've messed up too many times. Nobody will give me any credibility. I'm an ex-con. I'm divorced. I'm not well-educated. I'm too educated. I can't speak well. My mother dressed me funny. No, not me. These bags here will hold me back. Just move on and find someone who doesn't have all this . . . this . . . STUFF.” Do any of us realize (preaching to myself again) that when we do that, we are placing our baggage in front of God's greatness? We are basically making the statement that GOD who created heaven and earth pales in comparison to STUFF , BAGGAGE?

Today, stop hiding behind your past failures. Stop hiding behind your insecurities. Take the step of faith. Step out from behind the baggage and into the future God has promised you! 


robin said...

Wonderful as always!!

tchrmom said...

Wow! Thanks, Alecia, for posting this incredible reminder to let go and let God. I would love to share sometime how God brought me to this place of letting go and how it changed my life's direction; however, it seems that "letting go" is a constant, not just a one-time occurrance. Btw, a great book by Max Lucado TRAVELING LIGHT addresses baggage issues like anger, disappointments, etc. I re-read it from time to time and am in the process of developing a study guide just for my local ladies' Bible study group. I highly recommend it.

Alesha Noelle Leveritt said...

To Robin - thanks! Love you my friend!

Angela, I've not read the book, but I will definitely check it out! And you are so right, if you are going to live an on-fire and on-purpose life for Christ, you are CONSTANTLY letting go!