A Scale Peeled Away

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illustration of EustaceI’m certainly in a time of refinement right now. A lot of things inside me are being rearranged and even removed, but it reminds me of what happened to Eustace in Voyage of The Dawn Treader: with each scale that Aslan tears off, it’s difficult, but I’m becoming a person again; no longer will I be a dragon marked by greed and selfishness, but instead a real person with a new heart. And that’s exciting. Jesus has been speaking loudly and lovingly, and I think that one of the things He shared with me can mean something to you, too.

About two weeks ago I was ready to go to bed. I turned out the lights and laid down, but in an instant I saw something in my mind: a hideous face sporting an evil grin. I knew this picture was only in my head, but it still made me short-of-breath scared, because I saw in every aspect of that creature’s expression it’s desire to have me. I tried to think of pleasant memories and lovely places to block that image out, but when I would, it would be there, behind me, carrying that same disgusting grin. I prayed. I prayed and prayed for help, to be released of it. Suddenly, a verse entered my mind in the midst of everything else:

Sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.

This verse is Genesis 4:7. I know that because it was the first verse I ever underlined in my Bible that actually meant something to me; I was probably nine or ten, and after an argument with someone, I randomly opened my Bible (I never purposefully opened it back then) and found it. It simply spoke to me, calmed me down a little. I’ve known and treasured this verse for many years, but until recently I never realized the true depth of it.

I see now that Jesus wasn’t just speaking about my anger in that little situation; He was telling me what was really going on in my life. Seeing that hideous face behind me in all of my memories suddenly became a vivid picture of my life.

That face belongs to sin.

All my life, in so many places, it has been lurking right behind me, seeking to overtake me. But now– there’s a chance. I can master it! I can rely on God’s strength, and it will leave me more scared than I was of it’s face at first.

That night still encourages me, but more than that: it keeps me in check. If I am tempted in any way, I remember what sin truly looks like; I remember that it is evil and disgusting and wants to hurt me. And that makes me desire Jesus even more than I already do.

Thank you, Jesus, for peeling off these scales. I can’t wait to see what a real Tessa looks like. You are wonderful, and I love you.

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