Murky Water

masterpieceTherefore, dear friends, since we have such promises, let us cleanse ourselves from every impurity of the flesh and spirit, completing our sanctification in the fear of God. (2 Corinthians 7:1)

Ponder It.
Are you a messy or neat painter? Do you take the same approach to everyday life?
What do you need to get out of your life right now?
How will you trust God for the cleansing process?

Receive It.
When you start a painting project, you need water to rinse out each paintbrush as you go. That way, you always have a clean paintbrush that won’t taint the next color you use. Each time you rinse your brush, the leftover paint fills the water. The first time you use it, just one color fills the clear water, but as you add more and more colors, the water gets murky. The brush is less and less clean. You can’t start with a cup of clear water and expect it to remain clear forever. You have to pay attention as it gets murky and switch it for clear water as you continue your project.

The same concept applies throughout your life. You can ask for God’s forgiveness, and He gives it to you, but you continue to choose poorly, have impure thoughts, speak in anger, mistreat someone, and so on. The water gets murky. Of course, God’s grace covers all sin, but it affects your life. It gets murky. You have to continually look at your life with clarity and acknowledge what junk you’re swirling around in your life. What are you doing to muddy your life? Even as you try to continue to paint a beautiful picture, that murky water stays on your paintbrush and impacts things that you never thought would be related to the mucky areas of your life. Sin spreads.

God is good and He eternally forgives. He wants you to run to Him every single time you take a step away from Him. At first, He challenges you in the big things. As He works in your life and you release some of those big struggles to Him, He says, “Now let’s work on some of the smaller things that need to be cleaned out of your life.” And in many ways, the faith journey becomes harder, because the pruning gets deeper, more invasive. He loves you through it all. He simply wants to weed out anything that might come between you and Him. Spiritual growth is a lifelong venture. Continually check the cup of water. God is willing to keep switching it for a clean cup, but you have to notice the murkiness.

Live It.
Carry a bottle of water with you throughout the day, or set a glass of water on your desk or counter. Each time you have a bad attitude, think an impure thought, or do something disrespectful to someone, including God, put something in the water—a piece of paper, scrap of food, or anything else you have lying around. Reflect on the impact impurities have on your life.

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