Joy in Jesus Ministries, the ministry of Dan & Vonnie Allen, seeks to impart to the world the joy only Jesus can give. This is done by: Mentoring - pastors and pastors wives; Messages - preaching each week; Media - radio/TV/internet spots; Missions - India, training Indian pastors and Christian leaders.

1joy noun \'jôi\ – a state of being and confidence, deep within one’s soul, that because God is in control, no matter the circumstances, all is well. This joy can only come from a relationship with Jesus Christ. Therefore, Dan and Vonnie wish you “Joy in Jesus.”
 


 

The Canopy is Gone

On this cold, crisp winter morning I can clearly see through the trees. What was, until a few months ago, a canopy of green leaves and underbrush is now tall, bare trees like sticks poking out of the ground. Houses nestled in the woods hoping to hide behind the foliage are in plain view. In fact, there’s a lot of things which were thought to be hiding that are now quite seeable—the old disabled pick–up truck on blocks, the shed with various tools and equipment leaning against it, the stacks of wood left to rot since gas heat replaced the wood stove, along with a lawn mower that stopped working and was just left. During the summer months, the canopy covers over these things. No one knows they are there. But now, they lay bare—screaming with conspicuousness.

There are a lot of things we like to hide under canopies of darkness, the recesses of our minds and the secrecy and purported anonymity of our electronic devices. But these things are clearly seen by the all–knowing and all–seeing God. 

It reminds me of observing the windshields of some trash trucks. I used to drive trucks, straight or box trucks, and remember how cluttered the dash of the cab can get. Scrapes of papers containing old delivery orders and directions, unused log books, empty potato chip bags and even some chips, congregate and find a resting place unseen by the driver and passengers, but clearly visible to on–coming vehicles. The fact that the cab of most trash trucks sits on the engine leaves a flat front that clearly exposes what is on the dash.

Despite our desire to hide things from God, we are like an x ray to Him—an open book. He sees clearly what we secretly stow away. The canopy is gone. The light of God exposes the truth.

Think of Achan and his ill–faded scheme to hide contraband stolen from Jericho and in direct disobedience to God’s command—all captured goods were to be consecrated unto the Lord. But he coveted after a beautiful cloak from Shinar, and 200 shekels of silver, and a bar of gold weighing 50 shekels (Josh. 7:21). He took them, dug a hole under his tent and pretended that all was well . . . no one would ever know. But God knew and he was exposed for the thief that he was. In another context, but just as relevant, Jesus noted: For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest, nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light (Luke 8:17).

So, what are you hiding? What has been buried so deep inside that even you have almost forgotten the deed? Isn’t it time to come clean and deal with this? God already knows. So all you need to do is acknowledge this sin, confess it, repent—meaning turn from it, and accept God’s forgiveness. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).

Until the buds of Spring break forth brand new leaves building a pristine canopy, snow is the only equalizer of the dreary and drab landscapes to sparkling and stunning vistas. This could be why Scriptures likens forgiven sins as white as snow or whiter than snow (Isa. 1:18; Psa. 51:7). It’s time for a canopy of fresh, fallen snow to cover that dirty sin which has been hidden in a hole under your tent.

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