2007-10-31 / Religion

'Dirty Glass'

(by: Pastor James Scarborough, Donalsonville Assembly of God)


To the ladies (and a few men who bother to notice), housekeeping is a neverending effort. As soon as one pile of dirty dishes is cleaned and put away, a new batch of dirty ones is already being generated. The same is true for laundry and the multiplicity of other things that go into making a presentable house. (So men, before you finish reading the rest of what I have to say, tell your wife right now how much you appreciate all that she does to help make your house a castle.)

With the arrival of our grandchildren - a journey that we have been traveling for over four years - there are new challenges to keeping things at home in somewhat of a survival condition. Just as I was about to sit down a few minutes ago to write this column, I heard Gale speaking to Jaleah (our two year old granddaughter) in a voice of strict urgency as she told her not to push the storm door any further open. I reluctantly asked if she had damaged it; the answer was encouraging, although not concrete, as she replied, "I hope not." But then, what would Papa be good for if he did not have to fix what they break?

Storm doors are good for a lot of things - they make a nice entryway and they make it possible to see outside without letting too much of the outside in. They are also a nightmare to keep clean if you have little girls running around at an accelerated rate of speed! The other day after the glass was cleaned to near spotless condition, looked in from outside to notice Jaleah's little face pressed so firmly against the glass that her nose and lips were flat. She quickly transformed a painstakingly clean glass into one that bore the smudgy results of a little girl having visited it. What did I do to her for messing up the door? Nothing. What will Gale and do about the door? Clean it again - and again, and again!

Our lives are a lot like that glass - they get dirty over and over. But the good news is that God is willing to clean us up over and over again. Certainly we need to grow up spiritually and not continue to allow the same sins to get us defiled over and over again. Just as I can patiently tolerate Jeleah's dirty handprints on an otherwise spotless surface while she is just a young child, I expect her to eventually grow up and not do childish acts. I believe that God has the same sort of expectation of us; He expects us to mature spiritually and refuses to be defeated by those things that we were once overcome by.

When you look at your life, do you find that you are still getting spiritually dirty from the same habits and temptations that have robbed you of spiritual victory for years? If so, do not give up - ask God to clean you up one more time. He will because of His unconditional love for you. Next, ask Him to help you to rise up above those things that so often defeat you. Then cooperate with Him as He works within you - do what He wants you to do, so you can become the person in Christ that He wants you to be. May Paul's words recorded in Philippians 3:12 be a source of strength and encouragement to you: "Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me" (NIV).

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