Last night at our Lent Study we were looking at one of the chapters of CS Lewis’ book, ‘Mere Christianity’. There are lots of little gems I could mention but the title of this post points to the one that I am:
It is the difference between paint, which is merely laid on the surface, and a dye or stain which soaks right through.
Paint can cover all manner of things, blemishes, faults even old paint. Painting is all the rage at the moment, old pieces of furniture that maybe people wouldn’t be interested in are being painted over, being given a new lease of life. Painting is good, isn’t it?
Well yes, but…
Paint doesn’t change the essence of what something is, just how it looks. It tries to hide the old, it screams what is underneath should be hidden and forgotten about.
Staining on the the other hand declares something different. It soaks into the wood, it brings beauty out of old scars and enhances the story of the piece of wood. It celebrates the old whilst bringing it into new life. However there is something else too, careful attention needs to be paid to the flaws, they need to be treated in ways that wont effect the future while still do not deny the past.
Lent is a time to let the presence of God soak through us rather than just letting it sit on the surface.