Now you may think it is a little strange to be so excited about Garbage Day, but with a family of seven and the youngest in diapers, I love getting the trash OUT of the house and garage. The garbage seems to pile up in the three bathrooms and the kids' rooms especially. And, since our garbage disposal is broken, I now scrape the dirty dishes into the trash and by Thursday (our Garbage Day), the smell can sometimes be quite obnoxious. Somehow, getting rid of it makes the house seem cleaner....
I was thinking that just as we need to "take out the trash" at home, we also need to take the trash out of our hearts and minds. Boy, can the garbage pile up in those places, too!
I am so thankful that through the blood of Jesus Christ, I am "trash free!" He cleanses me and takes away my sin. Through Him, I am a New Creation- the old has gone. No matter what the sins of my past were, they are gone.
"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."-1John 1:9
And, just as we would never want to bring that stinky trash back IN our house, Jesus does not want us to bring "the trash" back into our hearts and minds. Sometimes, even though we have been forgiven, we don't forgive ourselves and we continue to lament over our past sins, dredging them back up, replaying them over and over again in our minds. We forget that God does not see our sins anymore once He has forgiven them. "Love does not keep a record of wrongs." When God sees us, He sees us in Jesus, completely forgiven, completely new. He has no memory of our past mistakes and failures.
"....your life is now hidden with Christ in God." -Colossians 3:3
And, sometimes, I let the "trash" collect in my thought life. I need to take out the "trash" of wrong, negative thinking. I let worry, doubt, critical thoughts, and comparisons collect there. I need to "rid myself of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from my lips." I need to set my mind on "things that are above, not on earthly things." I need to "cast down all imaginations" and take every "thought captive" in Jesus Christ.
"...whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever admirable- if anything is excellent or
praiseworthy- think about such things." -Philippians 4:8
Have you ever heard the saying, "Garbage in, garbage out"? The thoughts we meditate on, either good or bad, Truth or lies, wholesome or unwholesome, Godly or fleshly will come "out" in our actions, beliefs, and behaviors.
I also can let the "garbage" collect in my heart. I can harbor anger, unforgiveness, envy and jealousy in my heart. This garbage can get pretty "stinky"! I continually ask God to search my heart, showing me anything that is in there that needs to be dealt with. Like the garbage in my kids' trash cans, I sometimes don't even know it's there. But, I find it when the smell gets my attention as I walk around the house, sniffing the air like a hound dog, trying to find the odorous culprit! When I find the stinky garbage, I don't leave it there, but get rid of it. The same with my heart. I ask God to purify my heart, to "create in me a new heart and renew a right spirit within me." I go to God in prayer.
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition,Tracy's paraphrase: Pray about everything THEN God's peace will guard, keep safe my heart and mind. Through prayer, the Holy Spirit will show me "trash" that needs to be taken out of my heart and mind.
with thanksgiving, present your requests to the Lord. Then, the peace that
passes all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus."-
Jesus, praise You! Thank You that You cleanse me and purify me. Thank You that You take out the garbage in my mind and my heart. Thank You, Lord, that I am a new creation in You. Thank You that when You get rid of the garbage, it is GONE! Lord, help me to continually get rid of the things that are not Your best for me. In Jesus' Name I pray. Amen.Questions to Ponder:
1. Is there any "trash" in your life that needs to be taken out? Spend a few minutes in prayer asking God to reveal to you any wrong thinking or heart attitudes that need to be removed.
2. Have you brought back in trash that God has removed? Has He forgiven you of a sin, but you keep thinking on it, reliving it?
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