Filthy Rags

But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; Isaiah 64:6 KJV

As the preacher looked over the congregation, pondering his next victim, I sank lower and lower in my chair. He always chose someone at random from the congregation to pray, so everyone tried to avoid making eye contact with him during this time. You would suddenly find everyone reading their Bible or the church bulletin.

When I was called on to pray, I just felt so unworthy, so unqualified, especially when asked to pray for others or in public. I looked down on myself and felt that if people knew me, they wouldn't be asking me to pray. I just felt that my prayers were weak, that others could do better, and I often could not properly get the words out because of over thinking what I was going to say.

Finally one day in frustration, I just confessed to the Lord that 'I am not worthy to do this so stop asking me.' To my amazement I heard 'That's right. You're not' and then this verse came to my remembrance in a very clear way. He made it very real to me. All our righteousness is as a filthy rag, literally in Hebrew, a menstrual cloth.

We all know this in our head, but I finally understood in my heart that it is not our religious performance, or our acts of 'righteousness' that makes us worthy to come to the Lord in prayer. It is the sacrifice of His Son Jesus that makes us worthy to pray. We stand before Him washed as white as snow by the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, while our own 'righteousness' is as a menstrual cloth.

When you are called on to pray, step out boldly knowing that God has made you righteous through His Son Jesus Christ, and not by your own actions. You are only worthy, because He has made you worthy, and you were brought here for such a time as this. So pray it boldly like you mean it, and speak to Him like you would your Dad.

Prayer: Heavenly Father I thank You for sending Your Son Jesus to redeem us, to wipe away our sin. Now we can come boldly to You in prayer. I adore You and want to know You better. Please fill me with Your love and peace, shine Your light through me, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.

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