About a month ago, I was driving in my car and the Lord said, " You are clothed with Righteousness". I paused and thought about it, I was perplexed but I had never felt something hit my spirit in such a way where it felt like it was a supernatural mind guard. Now, I had heard of this scripture before and heard many teachings on the subject but when the Lord said it to me, it stirred my spirit. The word that stood out the most to me was CLOTHED! I paused and reflected on what the Lord was trying to tell me. I begin to think about the word, CLOTHED! To be clothed means to be dressed, to be covered, to no longer be naked or to be adorned! As the Lord started to minister this to me, I started thinking and asked, "Lord what are you trying to show me?" See, the Lord had been dealing with me concerning shame, feeling uncovered, dwelling on past mistakes, and even worrying about how others perceived me in my "doing well".
It is funny how the enemy loves to torment us with thoughts of inadequacy when we make mistakes, when we fail to meet the mark, or even when we just think about what we could have done right or better in certain situations. However, the Lord wanted me to know that I was covered, I am His righteousness and that he had CLOTHED me. See, so many times we struggle with these feelings because our identity or our being covered is founded on something else. We try to clothe ourselves! We try to clothe ourselves with good works, we try to clothe ourselves with our talents and abilities, we even try to clothe ourselves with the things that we do for God. While all of this is great, none of it is the remedy for our nakedness. God isn't interested in what we do in our OWN strength. He isn't interested in what we can accomplish or make look "good" to those around us. He is interested and more concerned with what HE has already given. He wants us to receive HIS covering and his free gift of righteousness.
See, so many times we are striving to achieve when we should be resting in His work. Resting in what Jesus has done and what his blood has done for us! God was saying, "I know that you have made mistakes. I know that you don't feel worthy, I know that you are a mess. But guess what, this is why I have made a robe or covering of righteousness for you." Not only does the Lord cover our nakedness, he adorns us with beauty! This means that we are not just covered but we are covered WITH BEAUTY!
Let's talk about being naked and why we need to be clothed. I know so many of you are familiar with Adam and Eve in that Garden. They were walking around, naked and unashamed! Until something happened and they were deceived by the enemy and they disobeyed God. This sin resulted in them having KNOWLEDGE of their NAKEDNESS. I often have wondered why Adam and Eve were naked and then they were still NAKED after they sinned. See, sin makes us naked AND ashamed, it brings in torment. And then we try to accomplish something in our own will by attempting to COVER ourselves. We attempt to try to make ourselves "good". But even in our good works, we can't cover ourselves.
Let's check out Genesis 3:7,
"And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons."
As you can see, Adam and Eve attempted to do what all of us have done. They attempted to cover themselves and their shame. But the Lord still knew they were naked, they still knew they were naked, and they still were living with the shame of what they did. So after they sin, they started hiding, and trying to avoid God, they not only was trying to avoid him, they were afraid of HIM. This is what the enemy wants, he wants us ashamed, fearful and broken. This speaks to their torment. Isn't it something that they started to experience torment because of their sin. They started to experience fear. Now, let's pause here for a minute, Adam and Eve were afraid of God because of their choices to disobey him. But yet God was still there, he was still present. How many of you have experienced this? We mess up, we are ashamed and now we live in the fear of our mistakes, we don't even want to talk to God because it is our fault, right? Adam was covering himself. This is the enemy's perfect trap,
We all have had these emotions, we've all felt them and we all have sinned. But guess what, the Lord has COVERED you. So God provided a remedy. He killed or sacrificed an animal to make them clothes. Now, I believe the animal that he sacrificed was a Lamb but this is for another day. He gave them a better COVERING. See, the enemy wants to drive distance in between us and God but God desires for us to come to him when we feel inadequate or we fall short, so that he can bring us into freedom. When we become more righteous minded than sin minded, then we understand who we are in Christ and that we are Kings unto the Lord, called righteous and set apart to serve. So even if you messed up today or you fall short tomorrow, God says you can come to him boldly because the blood of Jesus has made you righteous! He sacrificed himself and gave his life to cover YOU! God displayed this all the more in Genesis when instead of sending them away all broken and cold and in torment, he provided them with a covering.
Genesis 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them.
This is what God does for us, its still the same today. He covers us so that we would no longer be Naked and ashamed. So instead of us always trying to perform, always trying to be perfect, always trying to make ourselves "good" with good works or doing good in our communities and families, and yet still living in torment of shame when we make one mistake or from our past, we will be covered by him, by his righteousness and by his love. See, when God sees you, he doesn't see you with your mistakes, he sees you through HIS son Jesus Christ and he makes you righteous! He makes you Holy and he makes you free. I believe when we struggle with sin, or when we struggle with hurt, shame, or fear. We have to know that we are COVERED, you don't have to live in torment! We are covered by his blood, we are protected, and every lie that the enemy wants to use against us, the Lord has already decided that he will cover us and continue to walk with us. God doesn't want us to run from him when we make mistakes, he doesn't want us to leave his presence, he loved us so much that he created a way for us, even in our mess to be with him! This is what it means to be clothed in righteousness! It means that when you are in fear, you are in torment, you mess up, or you struggle with shame, whether your own fault or not, you can live free, knowing that God has Clothed you with righteousness!
I will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall exult in my God, for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
Guest Blogger, Dormeka Pearce
Pastor Teresa actively travels throughout the country imparting the Word of God in a candid and refreshing way. Teresa is the host and creator of SisterFriends Cups and Conversations, an Internet Talk Show providing a platform for women to engage. www.newcreationfamilychurch.com to learn more.