Throw Off Your Cloak: Finding Freedom

When I was in high school, I remember walking out to my car one morning and seeing the words ‘You’re a whore’ written on the window. I think we can all agree that the saying Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words can never hurt you is a complete lie. Those words hurt me a lot. And I carried them in my heart for years, wondering if that’s what people thought of me.

Until I came across four very important words in Mark.

“Jesus stopped and said, ‘Call him.’ So they called the blind man. ‘Take courage!’ they said. ‘Get up! He is calling for you.’ Throwing off his cloak, Bartimaeus jumped up and came to Jesus.” – Mark 10:49-50

Throwing. Off. His. Cloak.

In New Testament times, beggars were usually blind, disabled, or diseased, and their cloak identified them as such. It was what qualified them to receive assistance. But Bartimaeus threw off that cloak. He knew that he would never be the same again after being called by the King of Kings, so he immediately cast away his old life.

And I realized I needed to do the same thing. It was time to throw off the various cloaks I had picked up in my life—whore, addict, sinner, perfectionist—so that I could put on the cloak being handed to me by my Savior: His.

I will never forget seeing those nasty words scribbled on my car. But when I hold those words in one hand and God’s words in the other, it’s easy to decide which ones I want to give power in my life.

Anytime that we base our identity on a label given to us by another person, good or bad, we are held captive by their opinions. But God is unchanging, unfailing, and unshakable, and when we find our identity in Him, we become those things as well.

What cloak do you need to throw off today as you run to Jesus?

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. Behold, the new has come!”
– 2 Corinthians 5:17

10 Comments

  1. Anne Mackie Morelli

    It is so easy to let others influence our self-perception and as your post reminds us we should instead be letting God’s perceptions of us, as his beloved children, influence how we see ourselves. I agree – let’s take off our cloaks and find our worth in Christ!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Colleen Mitchell

    Wow–so powerful. I didn’t realize that the cloak signified qualification for assistance back then! You are so right that we need to stop letting ourselves be beholden to what others call us.

    Liked by 1 person

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