Our tour guide took us to an excavation site in the middle of busy downtown Jerusalem. Before the dig began, this bustling area was used as a bus station for the city’s transportation system. They had to actually move the entire bus depot to a new location, and I found it weird that archeologist and volunteers could be found digging in a gaping, gigantic hole with traffic careening all around.
Layers of history from the First Temple Period all the way to the Ottoman Empire lay exposed, while growth and activity progressed on all four sides of the enclosed site. Like a weeping wound on an otherwise healthy body, the excavation created an awkward yet beautiful pause in the progression of life.
The Holy Spirit whispered a profound truth to me as I walked away from the buckets of labeled dirt: “As you grow in maturity in Me, I will always have a area of excavation in your life.”
Self-examination may be one of the most ignored processes of a Christian’s walk of faith. We are so busy trying to progress in our spiritual maturity that we forget that God wants to excavate certain hidden areas of our hearts. We are not to live in the excavation, but we must be willing to visit it and learn from the various aspects that create our personalities, designs and habits.
There is a history in all our lives that affects our beliefs and our behaviors. In order to adjust our thinking to the God-centered standard created by Jesus, we must take time to dig through our past, so our future will not be dictated by tainted habits and thought patterns. Moreover, though the self-awareness may seem inconvenient, the wealth of information gained will be invaluable to learning who we are in Christ and how we fit into His Divine Kingdom Plan.
“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139.23-24 NIV).