I was thinking back this morning about my son Nathan a few years ago when he was 6 years old, while he and I was having our daily Bible study. Daily he would reads for thirty minutes from his Bible out loud to me because I wanted to get him rooted and grounded in GOD'S Word at a very early age. After he read aloud, we would discuss the lesson. That particular day, we were learning about sin and the importance of staying away from it.
I said: Nathan sin is dirty to God and God is so clean that He can’t stand even be around it or look at it. I said, when we sin, we then have to go to Jesus and our hearts are all dirty from the sin and we can’t clean it up and we grieve the Holy Spirit of God when we sin because He is living inside us.
I asked him, Nathan, what if I paid a very high price to buy you a clean white shirt, and I told you to keep it clean and then you went outside and still you choose to play in the mud puddle even though you knew it would make you dirty? Then when the mud get the shirt dirty you tried to clean it but you could not., What would happen? He sit listening quietly, I went on. You would have to come inside and stand in front of me with that muddy shirt and see the sad look on my face that you got it dirty when I asked you not to. Then you would have to ask me to please forgive you and clean the shirt. That is how it is when we sin.
Nathan said, We get our shirts dirty.
I said Yes Nathan we get our hearts dirty and JESUS paid a very great price for us, with His own life and when we choose to play around in sin, just like mud, we know it will make our lives dirty…we then have to go in front of Jesus and confess that we did a bad thing and we hurt him from our sin and we have to ask Him to please forgive us and make us clean again because we can’t do it ourselves.
Nathan said, and then after you clean the shirt, I won’t play in the mud again…
My heart was jumping up and down, I knew that The Holy Spirit was teaching inside his little heart.
I said YES! YES! that is how it is with sin, we ask Jesus to forgive us, He cleans up our hearts and then we learn to stay away from that sin!
I asked him, what if after I cleaned your shirt and you put it on and you immediately went right back outside and you ran and jumped right in the mud puddle again?
Nathan chimed in, I might jump in so hard I would get stuck and couldn’t get out!
(By then I was about to shout, Hallelujah!) and excited, Nathan said, our prayers for more wisdom are working, I’m getting more wise!
Yes you are Nathan…that is the Holy Spirit speaking to you. I told him.
Then I said, yes, just like that mud puddle, sometimes if we go right back out and do that sin again after Jesus already forgave us, we can jump so hard we get stuck in that pit of sin and we can’t get out and we have to cry out to Jesus to help us.
Next, I asked Nathan, what is going to happen if you run right out and jump in that mud again after I cleaned you’re shirt?
Nathan giggled and said, I’m gonna get in trouble!
I laughed. Yes you would be in trouble and so will we if we keep choosing to willingly sin against God and we do not turn from that sin after we repent and He forgives us.
After we had prayer time each alone, we pray together, then we read out of Psalm 18 and I was explaining how God is a warrior and when the devil comes at us God is angry.
Nathan said, He will fight our battle because the battle is His not ours! (Out of the mouths of babes!)
This was such a blessing to me and GOD placed it on my heart to share it with others. One of my dear friends, a beautiful woman of GOD, Lisa DeVinney commented...
"It's just wonderful to hear how he's soaking up the Word and wisdom of GOD like a little sponge, and when he gets squeezed, that's what will come out."
The thought of that made me joyful, because I know that is truth. As I kept pondering it, I begin to ask myself, what comes out when life squeezes me? I want it to be the word of GOD! I encourage you to ask yourself the same question.
The truth is, we are like sponges, and we are constantly soaking up something. That's why it's important to surround ourselves and to saturate ourselves with JESUS!
If we were to take a new, clean sponge and on the right side of us we have a container full of pure, clean water, and on the on the left we have a container full of muddy toxic water. Now, that sponge is going to soak up whatever is in the container that we choose to surround it with.
If we choose a constant environment of sin no matter what kind of sin it is, perversion, hatred, violence, anger, hostility, gossip, drama, etc. and we live in that and participate in it, we are going to soak it up day by day until we are so saturated with it we will be ruined. How can a dirty sponge, full of mud, and toxic bacteria be useful? It wouldn't be. (Wow) A sponge like that, we would toss away and choose a clean one.
So here we are, "sponges} in the hands of our Creator, GOD. He has great purpose for us, but if we choose to soak up the world, and sin, and the lusts of this flesh, how can HE use us? He can't until we are clean. Thankfully He doesn't just throw us away, but HE waits for us to get fed up with the sin and come to HIM and then HE cleanses us and makes us fit for use again. Praise HIM!
Life gets tough, and satan is working over time. What is going to come out of you when times get hard and you are squeezed tight by the pressures of this old world? Everyday we get squeezed...and we can shower down righteousness on a sinful world around us, or we can be full of sin and the devil and just make the world more dirty when we are squeezed. I want to shower down righteousness. We can be saturated with righteousness, or sin, whatever we choose to soak ourselves in.
Now, we know that a dirty, toxic sponge is not very useful, but there is another kind of sponge that is not very useful as well...an old dried up one.
There are some who are believers who are just dried up. They never drench themselves in the things of GOD. They never mediate upon HIS Word, or read it. They do not have a daily prayer life and maybe they go to church on Sundays but it's just a ritual. They are dried to the bone.
John 15:1-6 "I am The True Vine, and My FATHER is the husbandman. Every branch in Me that beareth not fruit He taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the Word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
I AM the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
If a man abid not in me, he is cast forth as a brance, and is withered; and men gather them , and cast them into the fire."
That word in verse 6, withered, it means dried up; wasted away. I don't want to be a dried up old sponge!
This is why I say it over and over to myself and to everyone, it's so important everyday to have daily talks with JESUS, to get in HIS Word...to constantly be saturated with HIM, you can't get anything out of a dry sponge...we have to soak HIM up daily because life's pressures squeeze us daily.
Isaiah 44:3 "For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour MY SPIRIT upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring:"
John 4:14 "But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life."
Are you dried up? Do you want that water? Are you thirsty? Go to HIM!
Matthew 5:6 "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled."
If you are dry and thirsty...know Beloved HE has not tossed you away. He waits for you to return to HIM. It is The LORD'S Great pleasure to fill you! It is HIS delight for us to steep ourselves in HIM! I want to be so full of HIM that when life squeezes me, HE rains/reigns down on everything and everyone around me...a flood so that others are saturated with HIM too.
The world doesn't need to see me...they need to see JESUS! I want HIM to continue to over take me, I want to soak HIM up day after day, minute after minute and second after second. Life is nothing without HIM.
I pray that this has blessed you and encouraged you to know The LORD, to learn of HIM to thirst for HIM, to understand that HE is your well spring of life! HE IS JESUS...HE IS EVERYTHING GOOD!
Dear Heavenly Father...
We come today once again thanking You for who and all that You are. We praise You today for loving us and sending Your best to us. We are so thankful LORD that You came and You lived here to be our example and that You died for our sins to redeem us back to The FATHER. LORD, today we ask that You fill us. Plunge us deep into Yourself that we can be used by You, for Your pleasure and for Your glory! Thank You for choosing us and for letting us be part of Your Kingdom. We love and praise You, and was pray in Your Lovely Sweet name Jesus...Amen