CHRISTIAN LIFE & GROWTH
"The Umbrella Fashion Show"
A Picture of God's Cover of Protection
By Laurel J. Davis
See Laurel's blog at The Reluctant First Lady
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I used to attend a Titus 2 Bible study geared toward helping women in their marriages. One of the greatest lessons was demonstrated by an umbrella "fashion show" in which the protective coverings of each model's umbrella showed a different result of how well we operate under the leadership of our husbands.
I've adapted "The Umbrella Fashion Show" to demonstrate how well Christians in general operate under the leadership of God and His Word, the Holy Bible. Imagine runway supermodels modeling each of the following umbrellas that are in the condition actually described. You could even do a skit with real volunteer models. The Umbrella Fashion Show is always a hit, to God's glory, because it's a humorous, visual way to get everybody to think about the importance of our individual relationship with the Lord.
Thank you to my mentor and friend Joanne Frank, as well as the Christown Titus 2 ministry in Phoenix, Arizona.
Okay, let's rock the runway! Cue the music!
THE UMBRELLA FASHION SHOW
Have you ever thought of God as your "umbrella of protection"? Well, if you haven't, then we're here to show you what that might look like, and to get you thinking about the one most important "accessory" you carry with you at all times, no matter what the season. Come rain or shine, Jesus is your umbrella of protection. He's your perfect shelter when it rains, and your perfect shade when things get hot.
The question is, what does your umbrella look like in your Christian walk? Now, Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. But when it comes to how you hold Him up over your life, just how well are you allowing Him to protect you when the storms of life or the heat of trials beat down on you?
To help us envision Jesus Christ as our umbrella of protection, with the help of some very super models, we'd like to present to you the umbrella lines of two well-known designers.
Our first collection of umbrellas has been designed by...Folly.
Wading Wally is modeling our first umbrella. Folly, the designer, has gone "all out" for this one. Literally. It's called the "All Wet" umbrella of...um...protection. And my, can't we see why?
We're looking at the world's umbrella that has crept into this Christian's cloak closet. Popular among the more spiritually immature as well as the rebellious crowd, this umbrella just screams, "I'm saved, but you'd hardly know it!" This Christian believes in Jesus, and maybe even goes to church more often than just on religious holidays, but he still thinks and behaves a lot like people in the world.
The Christian with the "All Wet" umbrella has no zeal for the things of God in his life — except during praise and worship on a good Sunday. Because he rarely reads his Bible, and the only time he prays is when he's in trouble, come Monday through Saturday he blends in quite well with the crowd.
This is a carnal Christian, and a carnal Christian is all wet because he makes very little use of the protective covering of God's umbrella over him. Thank you, Wading Wally, for donning the totally drenching "All Wet" umbrella. Please don't slip or backslide on your way out!
THE "HALF 'N HALF" UMBRELLA
Next is Half-Hearted Harry, looking simply self-serving under his "Half ‘N Half" umbrella, from Folly's classic and yet increasingly popular line.
There are parts of this obedience to God thing he really likes — like the Ten Commandments. He's never murdered or stolen a thing in his life, and he goes to church every Sunday. He has no problem praying for things he wants and helping others when time permits or there's something in it for him. And he loves to hear rousing sermons and testimonies, especially his own, about all of God's wonderful blessings in this life. Yes, indeed, he loves all the good parts about being a child of God. Purpose, destiny, breakthrough and the next level are his calling cards!
But don't mention things like dying to self, putting other people's needs before his own, loving his enemies, suffering for Christ, or being accountable. This Christian has decided that a lot of God's rules no longer apply in this day and age, that times have changed...and so has God's mind.
But then when the storm hits or the heat beats down on him, he's no longer stunning but totally stunned. With his "Half ‘N Half" umbrella, he is surprised to find out, often the hard way, that he can still be overtaken. By picking and choosing when he'll live by God's will and when he'll live by his own will, he is only half protected.
Thank you, Half-Hearted Harry, for showing us how well the "Half ‘N Half" umbrella doesn't work!
THE "WHOLLY HOLEY" UMBRELLA
Words cannot describe how snooty Miss Snobnose looks under her "Wholly Holey" umbrella. Yes, that's "Wholly Hole-y" — another item custom-designed by Folly.
This umbrella is a perfect complement to the overall look and feel of this "holey-er-than-thou" Christian, whose self-importance and judgmental attitude poke holes in her witness for Christ.
And how does she achieve this holy — um, I'm sorry, holey look? Well, with her tongue mostly. And by the looks of her umbrella, she's an expert! She's very good at building herself up by tearing other people down. She'll sound very humble while she tells you she's more godly, more spiritual, more knowledgeable, more experienced, more giving, more fruitful, even more an instrument for God's use than most other Christians.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, she has an eye for such things. A blind eye.
As her Wholly Holey umbrella reveals, she's more talk than walk. By the time she finally gets around to sharing the Gospel or ministering the spiritual gifts that God may have actually given her, her E – G – O has gotten in the way. She has "Edged God Out" by thinking she can be everybody's Holy Spirit.
Sadly, she's more like the Emperor who did not know he wasn't wearing any clothes — exposed, vulnerable and oblivious. She can't see the holes and tears her prideful tongue has ripped into the covering of God's umbrella over her. She boasts about being under His umbrella, and yes, she is. But by showing off more the fact that she has one than the fact that it is all by God's grace and mercy, she can't see that her witness is, well, still quite wet.
Thank you, Miss Snobnose. We've seen enough!
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Images courtesy of Laurel Davis
comments powered by Disqus Published on 2-17-15