October 26, 2019
Scripture: Proverbs 28:13
Those who hide their sins won’t succeed, but those who confess and give them up will receive mercy.
Thought for the Day: I don’t do a thorough cleaning of the bathrooms as often as I should, but I regularly scrub the toilet and wipe it down. Last Monday, I got out the old toothbrush and got on my stomach and cleaned behind the toilet. It wasn’t too bad at all until I got directly behind the toilet where the waterline comes through the wall. The dust and gunk that had built up on the waterline handle and around it was really quite atrocious and a bit embarrassing. No one else would see it, but it was there. Things are much cleaner now, and I don’t believe much time will go by before I check it again. Once you’ve seen that kind of dirt, it is hard to forget it. I share that story because I want to use it as a metaphor for our lives. How many of us are doing pretty well with our faith? We feel comfortable, while recognizing the need for some regular work. Squeezing in between the toilet and wall gave me time to wonder where in my own life is there some gunk build-up? Regular maintenance through prayer and study and confession has kept my spiritual life pretty healthy, but do I take the time every once and a while to look a little closer? Am I willing to squeeze into areas of my own spiritual and emotional life to see what I would rather pretend isn’t there? I do not use this metaphor to suggest that we are gunky people, or that we have messy spirits. I believe God takes a much more positive and gracious approach, but is there a little build up of bitterness, resentment, envy, jealousy or arrogance? It might be hard to see on a daily basis unless we really take the time required for a much closer analysis. Let me recommend that we ask someone to help us. I know it can be a bit uncomfortable if we are going to see what is really there, but someone else can both hold us accountable and also remind us of God’s mercy that comes to us through genuine acknowledgment and confession.
Prayer: In your graciousness, O God, may I always find the freedom to ask questions and explore some of the challenging issues of life. Where there is unhealthy stuff collecting under the surface and may not be visible at first glance, provide me the faith to do the necessary cleaning. Amen.
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