It was the last day of Unleavened Bread and the last homeschool meeting of the year. I walked into the meeting carrying my bag of chocolate matzah crunch. We had all been asked to bring a treat to share and I knew there would be lots of fluffy, leaven filled treats to choose from.
Up to this point, the week had gone by smoothly without any strong temptations to partake of leaven. But as I drove to the meeting, I could feel my resolve slipping, and my mind rationalizing my temptations…”It’s the last day; what’s one little day going to hurt?” I asked myself. Then came the big idea that there is grace for this situation. After all, hadn’t I learned this so many times before during this Feast of Unleavened Bread: His grace is sufficient, even when (especially when) I am inadequate. What should I do? I prayed for wisdom and asked the Father to show me His heart on the matter.
I began to mentally review what Scripture says about this appointed time and what picture it is supposed to paint on the canvas of my mind. During the week of Unleavened Bread, we are supposed to clean the leaven out of our homes. Leaven represents sin in the Scriptures. So while on a physical level we remove the leaven from our home, on a spiritual level we seek to remove the sin from our lives. The spiritual house cleaning is far more difficult than the physical aspect, and each year I recognize familiar culprits that I have allowed to slip back in during the course of the year. Each year I become aware of sin in my life that I have been blind to, or that I have accepted as part of my personality; but each year I acknowledge it, repent and do my best to turn from it.
Leaven Represents Sin
If the leaven represents my sin and I have just celebrated the deliverance that my precious Redeemer offers from that sin, should I be so eager to partake of it? If I couldn’t hold out one more day had I really experienced the deliverance offered to me? In the big scheme of things, did it really matter if I ate a bit of leaven? All the sudden, I was flooded with the sweet shalom (peace) of my Messiah as I thought of our family motto, “As for me and my house, we will serve YHWH!” I didn’t want to serve sin; I wanted the chance to grow in the fruit of the Spirit. In the big scheme of things it mattered more than I could have ever imagined. It mattered because it was a temptation to be ruled by my flesh and I had to make a choice about who I would serve. It mattered because giving in to this temptation would set the tone for the days ahead as I battle with food choices that hinder my weight loss. It mattered most because I had set out to celebrate the week of Unleavened Bread with great joy and thanksgiving for the deliverance I have received from the bondage to sin. Giving up early seemed wrong to the very core of my being. Suddenly, my desire to give in was gone and it was replaced with the knowledge that all things are possible; victory is possible, through Yeshua, who strengthens me!
The Power to Overcome
I walked into the meeting carrying my bag of matzah crunch, the joy of a battle won, and a new understanding of the representation of leaven. A couple of ladies asked what was in the bag and as I explained my treat, I had the opportunity to share about the beauty of celebrating the feasts of Passover and Unleavened Bread. It was the beginning of a delightful day!