Several years ago, my family took a vacation in Arizona. For two weeks, we put over 3,000 miles on the rental van just in the state of Arizona! One of the places we went to visit was Kartchner Cavern State Park, which is a cavern that was discovered in 1974. The two men who discovered the cavern had found it while exploring the mountain. There was just a simple sink hole (or blow hole), which I learned can be a sign of a cave underneath. They had to squeeze through this blow hole because it was so small and they crawled through a lot of mud. Eventually they discovered the beautiful structures that make up the caverns and they realized that they had found something so much bigger than they ever expected. Hidden underneath the mountain for years, this cavern had plenty of time to build its stalactites, stalagmites and amazing columns without interruption. Most people wouldn't have expected something so amazing from such a humble entrance. People are like that as well. What we see on the surface is nothing compared to what is hidden in our hearts. We sometimes are unaware of what we are capable of! The verses I am looking at today show us how the disciples also wondered if they were capable of causing pain to Jesus. Please use the link and read Matthew 26:17-30.
So often, when we read through Jesus' interactions with His disciples, we see their naivete shine through, yet we also get a peek at the fact that the time spent with Jesus was also resulting in wisdom. In these verses, we see the fact that Jesus revealed to them that one of them was going to betray them. The thing that I find interesting was the fact that each of them said, "Surely you don't mean me, Lord?" Each one of them so desperately wanted to believe that they were incapable of betraying their Lord, but at the same time they also found the need to ask the question out loud. Just the fact that they had the needed to voice that question shows the same human reaction we would all have. We each deep down know that we are capable of hurting our Lord, yet we also want to turn away from such a thought. Instead, we say, "There is no way I could do that!"
But, isn't it interesting that the very things that we can be the emphatic about are the very things that deep down we feel doubt? Instead we voice something loud and strong so we don't have to explore the caverns in our hearts that may reveal something that we are ashamed of. But, at the same time, I think they were also looking for the reassurance that He wasn't talking about them. You have to admit, there would be an incredible sense of relief if we could hear God tell us, "No I wasn't talking about you. You would never do anything to hurt me!" Unfortunately, we are human and we do possess the capability to hurt our Lord. In fact, the more we shout to ourselves that we are not capable, the more we become susceptible to fall to our temptations.
So, for as much as we really don't want to explore the dark recesses of our hearts, we also discover amazing beauty and treasure when we do. Because when we begin to allow ourselves to follow God's lead into the caverns in our hearts, we may have to crawl through a bunch of mud and muck, but we eventually we will be led into great rooms full of the beauty that God has been slowly building up in our hearts. We will see the love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control that God has been washing through the caverns - and God's work is always amazing. It is worth the journey!
Are you willing to crawl through mud to find a treasure God is building up in you?
This post is linked with Faith Filled Friday.