This morning God was speaking to my heart and I want to share this with you. Then I’m putting it in my book “Grace to grow” study guide which I trust will be done soon and then published and released to you all. He was talking to me about being steeped in Tradition. He (Jesus) answered and said to them, “Why do you also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition? Matthew 15
I want to share that many of us are steeped in tradition from the time we are young. Most of you are whether you realize it or not. Some to more of a degree than others; but traditions are part of our society, upbringing and it’s all around us. We are taught in school to honor certain traditions. It happens in the work place. I happens all around us. Putting up a tree is a tradition; SO are anniversary celebrations and putting our hands over our heart when the flag flies. Churches have traditions. Families have them. Society. It’s everywhere.
So let’s look at the word steeped for a minute: When a tea bag is soaked (steeped) the water turns brown and the tea and the water become one.
Jesus wants us to be one with him and God the Father but we are “steeped” in so many things it’s no minor task for him to get us out of that. So you see? We aren’t going to get out of this tradition problem by just name it and claim it. Not by marching around proclaiming we have changed. Not by praying a prayer (or two or three) or just reading a good book about overcoming. The transformation God wants to do will come from within (by his Spirit) and move outward until his rivers of life flush your soul clean. When he’s done you won’t be bound by traditions anymore. You can’t mentally just decide you are going to go from point A to Point B: God has to take you there by his Spirit.
I think we really need to see how impossible it is to be like Him in order to see what a miracle it is when we become like him. It really is a job he does from the inside out. “Out of your belly” he said shall flow rivers of living water. But you have to receive that by faith and aim for it; strive for it; Insist on it even. I would say CHOOSE that over Tradition. What your mom did, your dad did, your church, your friends or even your town and co workers: Doesn’t matter if God says let it go then LET IT GO! I’m going to be really daring and say even what your spouse thinks is not so important as what God is saying to you about a matter.
IF you are steeped: face it admit it then make plans with God to quit it. Loving people is one thing: Steeped in tradition is another. And I want you to remember something: what Jesus said back then was a seed. He expected that seed to spring up and produce other offshoots of this revelation the same way a tree branches out. We should never limit God to just the words printed on the pages of our bibles. God did not use the word seed for no reason. He wanted us to think about what seeds do. They come up out of the ground and the plant or tree “branches out” gets taller; Is no longer just a side but a living growing being. So should you be. And purity is simply this: becoming un-steeped and unpolluted by the traditions of this world. You can be that way and still enjoy a Christmas party.
Or a birthday party. However you are “at” the part not “of it”. Get it? Think in terms of inside to outside. Water from God flowing up through your Spirit “flushing out” all that is not of him. Washing it away. Down the drain. Let it go.
Question: Do you see some areas where you are steeped in tradition? Write them down. Let God know you want it flushed out. That you want to be more like him and become all He intended you to be.
by Laura Grace, minister and Author of the upcoming book “Grace to Grow study Guide” now in process.