“I had an enlightening experience for my faith walk last night,” Stan commented one morning.
“What happened?” I asked.
“I was in the garage doing something I don’t do nearly often enough,” he replied. “I was cleaning it!”
“Cleaning your garage enlightened your faith walk?”
“Sure did,” Stan said. “Especially when I got to a couple of drawers where I keep stuff.”
“What kind of stuff?”
“That’s the problem,” he replied, “and that was the enlightening part. There was this one drawer where I put stuff that I thought I might need one day, but usually I never do need it. For example, I opened the drawer and it was filled with tangled electrical cords.”
“Cords for what?”
“The kind of cords that are used for charging something. Maybe to hook one device to another. Those sorts of things.”
“Those are important to have,” I commented. “Without those a person could be in trouble.”
“Not if the cord is all by itself,” Stan replied. “And that’s what was in the drawer — cords for things that I no longer have.”
“So you had a drawer full of useless cords,” I said. “What’d you do with them?”
“Put them in a sack to take to Ed’s Electronics for recycling.”
“So now you have an empty drawer,” I said. “What are you going to put in it?”
“That’s the lesson for me,” Stan replied. “I’m not going to put anything in that drawer that I don’t need. Too often there are too many things in my life that should have been thrown away, but I have stuffed them into a drawer to get all tangled up.”
“That’s a vivid picture,” I said. “Life as a drawer full of tangled stuff you don’t need.”
“It is,” Stan replied. “And it seems to me that both the apostles Paul and Peter wrote about that.”
“Well,” Stan replied, “not exactly messy drawers, but the apostle Paul certainly wrote about throwing away stuff I don’t need in my life.”
“Bitterness, wrath, anger, malice, slander, lust, deceit, and abusive speech to name a few.”
“Seems like stuff we should all get rid of,” I commented.
“Yeah,” Stan replied. “Get rid of it, don’t just stuff it in a drawer to pull out later.”
“You mentioned the apostle Peter,” I said. “Did he have something to say about this?”
“”He did,” Stan replied. “Seems to me what Peter was writing about is that once we have been freed from the stuff of the world, we are not to let it come back into our lives, tangle us up, and pull us down. Get rid of it!”
Bible verses to consider:
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Ephesians 4:31.
But now you also put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth. Colossians 3:8.
Lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and . . . be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. Ephesians 4:22-24.
For if after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. 2 Peter 2:20.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for all of the things you want to put into my life, as well as all of the things you want removed. I confess that too often I do not choose all you have for me, but I choose things that are contrary to and opposed to the life in Christ you have for me. Please forgive the foolishness of trying to live this life in that way. And please, Father, help me in following every step of your lead so I do remove and keep removed all that you do not want to be in my life. Help me, too, with wanting only what you have for me for as long as you keep me on this side of eternity. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Have you removed from your life all that has kept you from accepting God’s free and gracious gift of life with Him eternally when your time here is completed? If no, why? If you do have the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing with removing and keeping removed all of the stuff in your life that God wants removed, all of those things that entangle you and keep you from God and what He has for you? As well as you would like? As well as God would like? If you sense the need for change in what is and what is not in your life, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?