Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Garbage In - Garbage Out

“So Jesus said, “Are you also still without understanding? Do you not yet understand that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and is eliminated? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man.”” – Matthew 15:16-20

In my last house, I had a garbage disposal in my kitchen sink. I loved that garbage disposal! I could put anything into it and at the flick of a switch, poof – it was gone! The turkey tetrazzini that sounded so good (but was so disgusting the dogs wouldn’t eat it), the pecan pie that was pecan syrup, the freezer burned ice cream, that stuff from the very back of the refrigerator that’s blue and hairy – it wasn’t picky! It would take it all in, chew it all up, and down it would go never to be seen again!

Now that I’ve moved, I don’t have a disposal anymore. Now I have a sink drain screen. When I rinse the plates, it catches the uneaten pieces of food. Then I have to pick up the screen, and take it to the garbage can and empty it. It’s a chore, but it’s much better to do it that way than to have a clog in my sink to deal with!

Sometimes we are like the garbage disposal. There’s no filter between the world’s vices and us. We aren’t picky eaters! We take in the behind the counter magazines, the TV ad’s that sell sex more than the product, the music that tells us to do what feels good rather than what’s right, horror movies, books of crime and devious acts, and so much more. We take it in, let our brains chew on it, and down into the depths of our hearts it goes. Just like the garbage disposal, poof, it’s gone! Or is it?

There’s just one problem with the garbage that we let enter our heart. There’s no drainage from the heart except back out through the body’s actions. Our senses take in the garbage of the world as if we were a disposal, when in fact we’re more like the sink drain screen. What we allow in most definitely will come back to hurt us. We have to make a conscious effort to filter out and dispose of the garbage we come in contact with.

Have you ever watched a movie on TV that had bad language, and found yourself repeating it just hours later? Have you ever watched a show where someone was drinking an alcoholic drink, and found yourself craving it? What do you think about when you’re listening to one of those songs about “intimate” relationships? It’s embarrassing to think we are that easily sidetracked. Yet exposing our senses, the plumbing of our hearts, to these corrupt things leads to one thing: sin.

It’s our own desires that cause us to sin, and those desires start in the heart. Our heart is the throne room of the Holy Spirit. We wouldn’t track dirt into God’s house, and we should be careful what we allow into the home of the Holy Spirit.

Photo courtesy of Wiseacre Photo.

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