As I stated yesterday, I decided to spend Yom Kippur at home so I can dig into myself and learn what I needed to do to move forward. So, what did I learn from my Yom Kippur day of introspection? To sum it all up in one sentence: I’m a bad person.
So many times I had the chance to be like Paul but wound up acting like Peter. I think I finally heard the rooster crow yesterday, and it was crowing all day, reminding me of all the ways that I denied Christ.
Let’s start with the basic form of denial: identity. If anything, I love to call myself a Messianic Jew because I feel that I have gained something precious. I feel like I have received a new inheritance, rather than lost something. However, when people ask me what religion I am, I just say “Jewish”. That doesn’t say much about me. If anything, it shrouds Christ behind a curtain and people think that I am just a “go to synagogue Saturday, not eating pork kind of guy (although I will admit that I still do like my shellfish)”. They don’t get to hear the joy that I have from being saved. In fact, what they perceive is that I am one of “them”: someone who they imagined would never accept Christ. That’s not true.
Another way I have denied Christ was when I was asked at work what kind of music I listened to on my BlackBerry. The first things that blurted out of my mouth were all of my “guitar heroes”. Where the heck were the “Jesus freaks” when I was talking? They remained hidden in my BlackBerry. They were the ones that I should have mentioned first. They are the ones I will more than likely listen to in the car. Heck, why should I mention Yngwie Malmsteen when I only like his instrumentals. His lyrics are all dark and demonic and don’t really make me want to scream and sing them, like Kutless, Seventh Day Slumber, and Decyfer Down make me want to do: scream out the joy that Christ gives me and, for lack of a better term, shouting at the devil telling him to BEGONE! I should have mentioned them, along with Jeremy Camp and Skillet. Those are often my first choice. Then should come the Andy James, Steve Vai and Paul Gilbert stuff. Why should I be afraid of telling people of the music I listen to. Other people are listening to that death metal crap with all the screamos. They should be embarrassed… not me.
I think this whole act of denial has been punishing myself on the inside. I haven’t been very musical, and I haven’t shown very many signs of motivation. I felt like this was the clog in my system.
I have many more, but I think the point has been carried across. There is a shining ray of hope that did occur within the 10 days of awe:
Earlier this week, I did finally stand up for Christ in the face of opposition. Not that I was ever really wanting to hide Christ, but when I was finally asked by Joelle’s brother-in-law (who is a classic Pharisee in my books), I stood up in the name of Christ. I got the usual garbage from him, about turning my back and betraying Judaism. I knew how to shut that up: I told him to show me any piece in the Torah that explicitly states Christ is not the Son of God and that I have done betrayed my faith, because I knew that I had so many pieces of scripture that points otherwise. I remembered the feeling that I got out of it: total gain. Total freedom… I mean talk about the Truth setting me free. It’s like that nasty clog in the drainpipe just got released. I also got total realization that I did not do this in the past. This is what really led me up to yesterday. It opened my eyes up and I needed to look into this.
Now that I have woken up and heard the rooster, I know what I need to do. I need to put Christ first. When someone asks what I believe, I need to put the term Messianic in front of Jew. It might prompt them to ask, to which I can tell them of my love for Christ. That is who I am. When someone asks me what I listen to, I should talk about all of the bands I am first to listen to in the car: the Christian ones. When they ask who they are, I can tell them. If they get turned off by it, that’s their loss. Saying anything else for my own gain would be considered loss. I should not express any fear of who’s watching me when I pray in the car when I get to work. It just might inspire them to do the same. This is how I believe that treasures in Heaven are built. I need to set my sights more on those treasures in Heaven.
After all, it has been stated that where your treasure is, so is your heart…