Encouragement for Today
Zoe Elmore, Proverbs 31 Speaker Team Member
I John 1:7, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son, purifies us from all our sin.” (NIV)
After our family had finished breakfast, I began cleaning the kitchen; it always takes a few extra minutes to get all of the smudges and streaks off of the black stove top, but I take pride in making the stove top shine and sparkle. I threw the paper towels away and turned off the lights. As I turned to admire my nice clean kitchen, a tiny stream of sunlight entered the room and illuminated the stove top.
Much to my horror, I noticed tiny grease spots dotting the front panel of the stove. I thought I had been so careful to remove all of the dirt and grease; yet dirty spots had been left behind. Once again, I took out the cleaner and paper towels; as I scrubbed at the spots I noticed spots on other areas of the stove. How long had these been here? Was I really such a terrible housekeeper? Had anyone else noticed these spots and why hadn’t they said something – or better yet, why hadn’t they cleaned them up?
As I worked to remove each spot, the Lord reminded me that I have dirty spots in my life that need to be removed. It’s not enough to clean up the areas that people see; it’s necessary to clean up those areas that are hidden from sight because sooner or later that “hidden” spot will become visible to everyone. When I stopped long enough to take a look at these spots in my life, I saw bad habits that needed to be broken, a tendency to believe the old negative tapes from childhood, and the desire to control my life. It’s a funny thing about spots – if left alone, they can turn into stains, and the stains can be harder to remove than the original spot.
I’ve been wearing my finest clothes, the prettiest shoes in my closet. My make-up and hair are always done. But underneath it all there are these “spots” that need to be removed. Because I’ve chosen to ignore these spots, they are beginning to cause a stain on my testimony for Christ.
Just like the streams of sunlight that illuminated the spots on my stove, Jesus Christ the Son has illuminated spots in my life that need to be removed. I must choose to allow the light of Christ to shine into every area of my life, casting its light on the dirty spots that need to be removed. Then I must be willing to get to work and allow the Holy Spirit to be the spot remover.
My Prayer for Today:
Dear Father, thank You for sending a tiny ray of light into my kitchen today to remind me of the dirty spots in my life. I invite Your Holy Spirit to direct me in removing them. I no longer want the testimony of my life to be stained with these dirty spots. Continue to show me the hidden spots that must be removed by the cleansing blood You shed on the cross. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Daily, I must ask the Lord to shine a light on the hidden sin-spots in my life that cause a stain on my testimony.
Be willing to allow the Holy Spirit to guide and direct the cleaning process.
Begin journaling the marvelous things the Lord is teaching you.
Find a trusted friend that will hold you accountable for the work-in-progress.
How can I rearrange my schedule to ensure that I’m spending sufficient time alone with God in order to have dirty spots revealed?
What practical things can I do to reinforce the new lessons God is teaching me?
Have the dirty spots in my life been hurtful to others and do I need to ask for their forgiveness?
Psalm 199:130, “The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.” (NIV)
1 Corinthians 11:32, “When we are judged by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be condemned with the world.” (NIV)
Galatians 5:24, “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires.” (NIV)
The Ultimate Makeover, by Sharon Jaynes
Do You Know Him?
Who Holds the Key to Your Heart, by Lysa TerKeurst
Originally published Tuesday, 18 October 2005.