Just what the doctor ordered.
My oldest brother is a famously fabulous doctor…and an infamously insensitive shot-giver. Emblazoned on my childhood memory is an occasion of much-needed medical attention, to be administered via a penicillin jab in my bare back-side. With dread – and much embarrassment over the full moon exposure – I braced for impact. Although my doctor-brother’s procedure felt more like a stab than a jab, the cure was efficiently and effectively delivered and I was back to my normal self soon thereafter.
“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes, and he is the one to whom we are accountable.” Hebrews 4:13 (NLT)
When I first read verse 13, I have to admit the dominant feelings were of embarrassment and conviction. Does it really mean “nothing” is hidden and “everything” is exposed? With a fearful, cringed posture, I researched other translations, hoping to find less-strict or perhaps more accommodating interpretations. As it turns out, there is no escape from this nothing–everything calculated symmetry.
So, what shall I do with this? It’s hard to say “I have nothing to hide” but the truth is that with God, there is nothing I can hide.
After much introspection (including additional futile attempts to avoid personal application of this verse), I came to an important realization: although this passage certainly does address my accountability to God in thought, word and deed, I also find supreme comfort and confidence in this passage.
Although the concept of being fully known is initially uncomfortable, it is actually a tremendous blessing. God already knows all my fears, failures and weaknesses – the ones I’ve had, currently have, and will have – and He loves me anyway! The feelings of embarrassment and conviction are fine (probably even healthy); however, I am to embrace the laid-bare exposure and welcome God, The Great Physician, to continue the work of the Holy Spirit in me.
Today, reflect on your “nothing” and “everything” in verse 13 – what does this mean for you? Before you conclude, I encourage you to carefully contemplate Hebrews 4:16.
Be bold and find grace, my friends!