Today as I swept the dust from the floors and wiped the furniture clean, I laughed as I realized there is a lesson to be learned from "Black Mold and a Bathroom Re-do".
Black mold is nasty stuff. I have spent some time over the last couple of days educating myself on the subject after finding out mold had started to creep into our bathroom. One of my sources of information came from Greg White; he is one of the gifted men who is currently working on our bathroom. Greg and his family lived in New Orleans when Katrina hit, and during the months following Hurricane Katrina, Greg was involved in helping clean up homes that were devastated by wind and water....some homes sat for many days in several feet of water. During that terrifying time, Greg learned more than he ever wanted to know about mold.
Did you know our mold began from a tiny little opening between our shower and tile floors? Our shower, not properly installed, was leaking water (not a lot) each time it was used. Water has a funny way of locating an opening, so it found the crack. That is when the trouble started brewing....MOLD. Since air was able to reach the water through the opening in the tile, mold found a perfect environment to set up camp and grow. Outwardly, there was no sign of mold....no smell. If we had not found it and had it removed, the mold would have penetrated our sub-flooring and drywall.....spreading from room to room and even underneath, in the very foundation, of our house.
Isn't that a perfect example of sin? Like black mold, sin is nasty stuff and hides itself underneath very normal, happy looking faces. Sin lurks around seeking a tiny little opening. A weak spot. As soon as space opens up to it, even if just a little bit, sin quickly creeps in and makes itself at home. Over time, it begins to grow, and infest our lives, still hidden. Before we know it, our whole body is covered in the stuff, including our very foundation. It chokes us, invades us, and would desire to kill us.
Like with our bathroom, a demolition crew is called to come in with its team members to fix the problem: First, after the sin is recognized, "Repentance" enters with his sledgehammer to break everything apart; he painstakingly removes all of the coverings to expose the sin completely. Next crew member is "The Savior" with His cross-shaped broom to sweep up the mess; He throws the garbage into a pit, disposing of it, never to be remembered again. "The Spirit" then comes with a special miracle-working balm that mends the cracked and broken places, making what was once ugly seem almost new again. Last, after everything is cleaned up and looking fresh, "The Word" is brought in to rebuild that which was once hopeless and disgusting.
Note: our shower was installed improperly. If our shower had been installed the correct way, I have to wonder if mold would have set in. It is unlikely, because there would not have been a water leak. In the same way, we must make sure we have hidden God's Word in our hearts so our Salvation will be installed properly to prevent any potential "leaks". Resolving not to waiver when it comes to our faith, we must seal our souls with God's Word, following it and believing it with our whole hearts.
Note: there was a small opening between our shower and the tile floors. If the small opening had not been in our floor, water couldn't have entered; therefore, mold would not have grown. Likewise, as believers, we must continually search our lives for even the smallest cracks in our Spiritual walk. If we seal our lives with Truth, just like our new tile will be sealed with a substance called "epoxy grout", then we will be safe when the stormwater comes and attempts to flood our lives with temptation, grief, guilt, and shame.
To close, the believer's walk is all about His unchanging, all-encompassing, life-giving, Word. He has given us the tools and instruction manual to have a healthy soul, a strong foundation, and an ever-lasting life. But there is one more thing I want to mention that is a huge exclamation point to what I have shared in this post.
I mentioned Greg White above, I also want to mention Robert Crouch, Caleb Crouch, James Bradford, and Matt the tile expert. All of these men are helping us with our renovation; they are standing along side us and working hard to get us fixed up again. Each of them are believers who have strong ethical values and consider their work as doing work for the Lord. In making all of the comparisons on a Spiritual level, I would like to propose that when God says we are not to forsake the "assembling of ourselves", He does not necessarily mean a "church assembly", but surrounding ourselves with believers who are capable to walk along side us, give a hand when needed, support us, guide us, teach us, etc. Without the men who are working on our bathroom right now, Chappy and I would be left in a mess.....neither of us are capable of dealing with the project on our own. In the same way, when believers get into "Spiritual" trouble, we should not be too prideful to call the friends God has placed in our lives to help us in our time of need.
Chappy and I were fingerprinted today!!! We should have approval to travel to the Ukraine within 4-6 weeks. Please join us in prayer for a quick response.....
"But anyone who hears My teaching and doesn't obey it is foolish, like a person who builds his house on the sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat up against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash. " Matthew 7:26-27