Sunday: Psalm 15 & Luke 11:37-54

From Amy Stroup

“Now you Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness. You fools! Did not he who made the outside make the inside also? But give as alms those things that are within, and behold, everything is clean for you.”

In his book, “Real Identity”, Thad Barnum calls it the crossroads. The crossroads is the place where character is revealed; the place where all of the things that are going on inside of us are brought to the light and we are truly known. Living life at the crossroads is scary. It takes a lot of courage to stand in that place and sometimes……it can look pretty ugly. In this passage, Jesus calls us to take a look at our own cup and expose the inside for what it really is.

I have to show the inside of my cup? I have to reveal those deep, dark places inside of my heart that I am so ashamed to show? Why would Jesus ask me to do that? It may cause others to seriously question the faith or accuse me of being a fraud! I don’t want to disgrace the Christian faith.

Yes. Expose your cup.

Speak it out, repent from it, and cast off your shame because right there in the mess is where true freedom comes. Living life at the crossroads isscary, but it’s beautiful and powerful. Living life at the crossroads will affect change in the world and move others to go searching for this life of freedom that you have come to know. Life at the crossroads is where the inside of the cup is just as clean as the outside of the cup. Not because of what you’ve done, but because of who he is.

Jesus draws attention to the Pharisees’ legalism out of love and compassion. He wants to set them free to live a life that does not require a formula to get a hold of the grace that is so freely offered.

Our feeble attempts to earn his grace and love will only leave us grasping for more. We need to expose our cup and fully trust that the blood of Christ will make it clean.

Over and over and over again.

You are a child of the King. You don’t need to waste your time with legalism and judgment. You only need to be open and willing to trust in the power of his resurrection. Not only for yourself, but for those around you.

Recently, an old friend posted this status on FB about a conversation she had with her daughter. I hope you let the truth of this quote sink deep into your soul and transform your mind today. Be free to walk in the light today, my friends!

“She helped me more than most things to remember that I am just me. No use in wishing it were any different or wasting my time wanting to be just like someone else. It’s YOU, dear one. God made you. No use in disliking it. He didn’t have time to make a nobody. Quit being mean to yourself.”

 Lastly, I’ll leave you with this beautiful song to start your day. These words are truth. Sweet, beautiful truth and nobody can take this away.


I am rediscovering the truth that I am a child of God, first. I am also a wife and the mother to three beautiful children. I work full time from home for a non-profit in the Back Bay, living in community with 20 international students as the manager of the International Fellowship House. Church of the Cross is my Boston family and I believe this is just the way God wants us to be. I love being on this journey with all of you!