The construction worker waved a red flag for us to stop as a line of cars proceeded from the opposite direction. Waiting for the traffic to pass, we noticed new steel telephone poles lined up along the side of the road and the massive equipment that would be used to replace them.
The old wooden poles, some barely standing, appeared weathered and splintered. As I looked at the connecting telephone wires that crossed into a tangled conglomeration, two words came to mind: It's complicated.
Finally, the flagman waved us on, and we continued our journey up the mountain. In a reflective mood, I thought of the years that had passed since our children were small. We used to make that same trip to visit my parents at their summer home. Memories flooded my heart as bittersweet tears trickled down my cheeks. Wasn't it just yesterday that we sat with my parents on the porch while our children played beneath their feet?
The memories didn't stop there, but cascaded into a long list of other things in the past that made me cry.
Losses: big and small. They can interfere with the present, causing us to feel sad or worry about the future. However, one thing we can do is focus on God's Word, for there are many verses in the Bible that tell us not to worry.
After prayers about the sadness, one morning as I awoke the following thought came to my heart:
The past is complicated. You must move on.
Yes, indeed, the past is complicated! Trying to figure it out would be like attempting to straighten out that messy conglomeration of twisted telephone wires.
It's not worth our time to untangle the complexities of the past, but instead, put our faith in God, who knows our every need and has a plan for our future.
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." - Philippians 4:6-7 NIV
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." - Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
Photo courtesy of Vecteezy.com
I sprinkled Clorox liberally over the dirty grayish ring surrounding the drain of our old fiberglass shower. Adding water to make a paste, I scrubbed as hard as I could, but the stain wasn't coming out of the textured flooring.
Frustrated and searching for answers, I found a recommendation for using a combination of baking soda, dish detergent, and rubbing alcohol. I followed the directions and waited for the prescribed time. After a final scrub, I was surprised and delighted. The shower had never looked so clean and bright.
Whew. Its was a lot of work to remove those stains.
Then, I thought about the stain of sin, which isn’t always visible on the outside and is hidden on the inside. I didn't want to think about my own flaws. But I wasn't alone. As mortal beings, we're all subject to sin and its stains.
But there is good news! There is a miracle cleaner for our souls—Jesus Christ. He gave his life on the cross to save us from the sin of humankind. When we believe in Him and profess our wrongdoing, we are forgiven.
The Bible verse from Isaiah 1:18 says, “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord; though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” What a beautiful image. Now, that is something to celebrate!
Whenever I’m down on the shower floor scrubbing at the dirty stains I created, I am reminded of the “scrubbing bubbles” of God's forgiveness. And while I'm on my knees, I say a prayer of thanks for the Salvation that comes through His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Photo courtesy of Vecteezy
Through God's Word!"
Find inner peace through Positive Thought, through Faith in God and through God's Word.