your life on the scale
The Lord hates dishonest scales,
but he is pleased with honest weights.
~ Proverbs 11:1
i remember when i got that this verse wasn’t about weights and scales. i was sitting in my parent’s backyard at their picnic table. my mother’s garden is the literal well-watered garden. but that’s just another metaphor for the good life, too.
it was sitting there in her well-watered garden that i wanted this.
i wanted an honest scale in me.
i was sick of my dishonesty, my thumb ever on the scale in my own favor.
i had begun to grow weary of my efforts at keeping up appearances. but still, even after my backyard prayers, an honest scale of a heart remained out of reach. i heard it in the words i’d say, in the words i’d write, the pictures i’d take. i always chose to put myself in the best light.
the lord hates dishonest scales, but he is pleased with an honest weight.
last week i was sitting on top of an overlook of ohio trees taking their own sweet time changing into fall colors, and i started to question the way i heard those words that time in the backyard.
and lately i’ve noticed that i’m starting to question every time the word of god makes me feel bad about myself. i’m feeling old enough or brave enough to question a god who stands there pointing a finger, pointing out where i’m messing up, no love in sight.
i hear that god loud and clear, yet i know that i’ve been told that isn’t who god is.
so i’m trying to believe what i’ve been told.
i’m trying on faith in a loving god instead of the god who points out my flaws in order to make me better, more like jesus. because listen folks, i’m never going to be good enough. i don’t know about you, but i’m never going to be clean enough to walk through heaven’s front door.
just listen to the words i say.
this idea of honest weights and dishonest scales, i began to wonder up on those rocks above the tree tops, i started to wonder if it isn’t more about how i live the life i’ve been given.
do i ascribe the correct weight to the different parts of my life?
or do i attribute the weight of a friendship as equal to the weight of my marriage?
well, yes. i confess that sometimes i do. that’s a dishonest weight, my friends. and god says he doesn’t like that. hates it actually.
but he doesn’t hate me.
have i given the weight to parenting that should be given to the good works jesus has created me to do in this life? tempting to be sure, but not honest. admirable even, but not a balanced scale.
have i made cleaning the house as heavy a weight as sitting with my five year old and reading a book? guilty as charged. the house sits unchanged while the girl grows into a new child day by day.
have i weighted like gold the food i put or don’t put in my mouth above how i treat my flesh and blood? will my eating habits come visit me when i’m too old to get around?
dishonest scales the lord hates, but an honest weight is his delight.
on that rock i lifted my hands.
i raised my hands like i was at a conference, though i was alone in the clean, new morning. i raised my hands like there were worship leaders on a stage and people i admired in the front row.
i raised my hands and i worshipped in spirit and in truth on that hill and asked god this.
“lord, help me give all the different parts of my life their right weights.”
i prayed it desperately, like the prayers i prayed in my bed as child, just not knowing what i’d do with myself if it didn’t happen.
and maybe because i was closer to the sky or maybe because i’m seeing god closer to who he really is, i felt heard.
i knew that i could leave in peace and that god was pleased to answer the prayers of the righteous.
not because i’m righteous, i hope i’ve established that. but because he is and because he loves me. and he covers me with his righteousness every day of my life.