How do you define an IMPRESSION? The first thing that comes to my mind is a hard surface with indentations of shapes or figures that represent some form of or a part of an object. Sometimes, there are no hard surfaces or indentations that are physical to the touch, but pictorial images, much like an infant’s footprints on a birth certificate. The common denominator is that both are representative of something that ties a thing or an object to something else….an imprint.
Trying to further piece together the purpose of this “dropped in my spirit” word, IMPRESSION, as I often do, I consulted Google. 🙂 The first definition that grabbed my eye is probably more in line with most people’s initial thought–“An idea, feeling, or opinion about something or someone, especially one formed without conscious thought or on the basis of little evidence.” Sounds like impressions can be pretty important, as they can encapsulate who we are—the imagery of who people see us as or what they have surmised about our character. Parallels can fairly and unfairly be drawn to our upbringing, our history and our genetics. These impressions are figurative imprints of our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual being that have symmetry to fossils that exist beyond our expiration on this earth….lingering imprints.
What about those infamous first impressions? Why are they, not always, but typically a good indicator of every relative thing or action subsequent to it? They certainly aren’t necessarily picturesque of who we have become, however the initial impressions are what folk remember first, it seems. For example, a female who exhibited promiscuous behavior during her youth, rarely loses “the label” when people reflect and attempt to identify her later in life. It is not a fair assessment of the female’s current character or behavior, as a person’s past is not definitively indicative of their future. I feel that it is a form of prejudice that is practiced too naturally and comfortably. Therefore, our early impressions can become our imprints and should not be recklessly formed—They oftentimes become symbolic of a permanent ID tag.
With that being said, God has the power to deliver us from ANYTHING—inclusive of those ID tags that represent our former whatevers, whoevers and whenevers. What a tremendous blessing of His forgiveness and mercy!!! As a proactive measure, if we focus more on creating good impressions, we could very well eliminate the need to boldly and sometimes publicly recreate or retransform ourselves in an effort to reclassify or remove those labels. We should start early with making our impressions good reflectors of who we are, and advise our children, family and friends to do the same. Like those fossils, whether good or bad, they are our imprints and remain for years and years — continually being researched, investigated, discussed and sometimes narrated about our existence. Those little ole impressions turn into archaic items, left on display in the museums of this earth, fondly named, Life.
As inferred in Google’s definition, many times, a person’s impression of us can be completely “off”—Based on little evidence, it results in unjust and unfounded perspective and conclusions. In those cases, remember that Mr., Mrs., Ms., and Miss Judgement are the leading jurors in an unfair trial, but God is the Judge, presiding over your case! You are a favored and protected witness! So, in a grand “God’s got me!” moment, give your own closing arguments—you won’t need any counsel to speak for you. Leave the Judgements with some profound reverse interrogation, by exposing them to the “Is your God…?” line of questioning. It might start like this:
“Is your God bigger and better than mine? We serve the same One, don’t we?”
“Is your God’s guidance more effective than mine, because I am a believer who still needs His direction in working through the details of my life?”
“Is your God’s sin meter weighting my flaws or my sins more than yours? Don’t think so!”
“Lastly, is your God one who is pleased that you are formulating impressions or judging me because….
I choose happiness over misery and negativity?
I don’t mind expressing my love for dancing, and choose to do so in decency and class when a favorite groove hits the airwaves? It’s not hurting anyone, is it?
I’m not ashamed of my love for R&B, Hip-Hop, Soul, Jazz and a little Country, but gospel music is what feeds my soul, calms my spirit and encourages my heart?
I happen to enjoy a glass or two of wine or a favorite cocktail, in moderation? Are you better just because you choose differently?
I’m not dressed in “Laura Ingalls” attire when I leave the house, as being fashionable makes me feel good about me?
In a moment of anger and honestly, sometimes in casual conversation, I might toss around some words that aren’t considered “good” words?
I can write about my love for God, realizing that I’m not perfect in my walk, but striving to be better every day? I, like you, am a work-in-progress, but unlike you, I own and acknowledge it.
I have a relationship with The Lord, although I pray for a more strengthened one?
I don’t require validation from those who can’t give me an entry stamp to Heaven or an exit ticket from Hell?”
In closing, what else must I do with these impressions that the ole Judgements have of me?? I’m gonna keep loving God, trusting His guidance and His reveal of me. I’m going to continue working on creating good imprints, so that my fossil, discussed by the museum’s tour guide or curator is presented accurately—a fair depiction of my character, my many flaws, my faith and my walk. And guess what??? The museum never closes, therefore is always open to perception and the impressions of Who I Know I Am vs. Who Folk Think I Am vs. Who God Created and Knows Me To Be!! I’m simply trying to make better impressions of my footprints in the sand. And like the famous reading indicates, when my footprints no longer appear, it is extremely important to note that I haven’t disappeared… God is carrying me. Prayerfully and hopefully, I will have made a good impression on Him to do so!
Peace & Blessings, Lisa B