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Taking out the Trash

Remember how before this year started, I had a word from the Lord for this year: Diligence? He was not kidding. He told me in I think September of last year that there would be an acceleration of a purification process and I would need to be more quick to make my decisions for or against what He would ask of me.

Already this year, He is showing me just how diligent I’m going to need to be.

I read something in a Christian fiction the other day that was astounding: The Fulton Street Church prayer meeting had begun seeing the Holy Spirit move in powerful ways. Reports of His mighty power changing hearts and lives of His people and their families were spreading and more and more people were showing up to the meetings just to catch a glimpse of the glory. After the meetings were over, volunteers cleaned up. But the trash they were picking up wasn’t your usual bottles and paper, they were weapons and drugs and poison vials and things of that nature. Evidence of former lives left behind in exchange for the grace of Jesus Christ. One volunteer said, “Even our trash gives testimony to the power of the Holy Spirit to change lives.” (Proof, Bill Bright & Jack Cavanaugh).

What a statement! It made me take inventory of my heart and wonder if the evidence I leave behind of me and my walk with God is giving testimony to His work in my life or if it shows proof that I live for myself.

When I first gave my heart to Christ for real, I was a Freshman in high school. I had been brought up in church, but had a conversion experience at 13 after reading a book called My Heart, Christ’s Home, given to me by a high school friend. Upon reading this book, I was so convicted of my sin and my lifestyle that I cleaned house. I threw out anything that didn’t sit well with the Holy Spirit in me. I didn’t want to disappoint Him! I even threw out my little sister’s Harry Potter books (sorry not sorry Sam…)! The proof of God’s work in my life was evident in the trash, then in my attitude, my behavior at school and at home, and in what I did, or didn’t do.

But somewhere along the way, I stopped being so careful and so diligent. It’s easy to slip into your old ways once you’ve had a taste again. Life as a Christian, though, should never go backward, never be stagnant. We should never be satisfied with where we are with the Lord, or think we have arrived. We should be daily become more and more like Jesus. Left in the wake of our death to self should be piles of former-self trash.

In doing my due diligence as the Holy Spirit leads, convicts, and reminds me of the worth of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross for my sins, I have been faced with an interesting question.

If Jesus were to come in the flesh today and ask me for my bank statements, web history, receipts, Facebook searches, YouTube history, and ask me to open my fridge, and ask me to give him a walk-through of my house, would He say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant”? Or would He say, “Well we’ve got our work cut out for us today”?

How about you? Is there anything you need to get rid of, get ahold of, quit doing, watching, saying, or buying?

“If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; and be renewed by the spirit of your mind; and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.”

Ephesians 4:21-24

Prayer:

God thank You for saving me. Thank You for sending Your son to die in my place. Jesus thank You for giving up Your life for me. Forgive me for making excuses for my sin and for allowing certain things to stay instead of taking them out with the proverbial trash. Holy Spirit show me what I’m still messing up with and convict me of my sin. Remind me who I am and who I could be one day if I remain in obedience to You and run this race well. Teach me Lord, I’m Yours. I surrender. In Jesus’s name, Amen.

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