Do you dislike flossing? I know I do, sometimes. At least when I think about flossing, it's often something I am reluctant to do, because it takes time and is an awkward experience. But once I actually do it, my mouth feels so clean, I feel lighter, my whole day feels better and I feel better about myself. And the more I floss the less it feels like an awkward “have to” experience and the more it feels like an enjoyable cleansing.
I pondered these things as I was flossing the other day and then God revealed something to me. Spending time with the Lord is a lot like flossing. Perhaps you start your day reading his word, praying to Him and listening to Him speak; this is your spiritual flossing. You're allowing Jesus to weed out the junk between your teeth that you have been chewing on, that you shouldn't have, and then He feeds you His own spiritual food.
Do you ever feel reluctant to spend this time with the Lord? Do you find it an awkward revealing experience that shows you just how many dirty things you've been chewing on? I know I definitely feel this way from time to time. This reluctance is rather hurtful since God loves us so much and wants to sanctify us, growing us in the likeness of His dear Son. But when we actually let Him do this, we feel so much lighter, our whole day feels better and we feel better about ourselves. And the more we partake of this spiritual flossing the less it feels like an awkward “have to” experience and the more it feels like an enjoyable cleansing.
Not all of you may be of an age, or gender, that requires you to shave your face, but this blog is populated with the things that I think about, and shaving is one of those things. On the same day that God was speaking to me about spiritual flossing, He gave me another analogy using shaving.
Shaving is another one of those things I occasionally dislike doing. Hmm, I am certainly making it sound like I am quite lazy with my grooming habits. That's probably something I shouldn't admit on the internet. But this is the analogy God gave me to share, so you're welcome.
I am a hairy dude, and I could shave in the morning only to have to shave again in the evening. I think it's all those Viking genes. (Note to self, that sounds like an amazing brand name for pants). So sometimes, I may put off shaving. At first, it seems like it's not a big deal. But soon that stubble shows up. Some may think I am just going for a rugged look, when in reality it's just a laziness.
God showed me that this is like sin. When we treat it as no big deal, something we can simply shave off later when it grows to an unruly length, we aren't taking our relationship with God and with Truth seriously. But make no mistake, sin nature will take its mission, to take you down, very seriously. The thing about shaving is, the longer that hair gets, the harder it gets to shave off. And as it gets harder, it gets easier to cut your skin, while trying to remove the unwanted hair. This is like sin. The longer we leave it the harder it is to remove, and we will more easily harm ourselves, other people, and things in our lives in the process.
So the moral of the story? Floss and shave often. No, the real moral is that our spiritual maintenance is not something we can put off or treat as a chore on the bottom of our list. Maybe right now it feels awkward or revealing to you. Maybe it feels like a waste of time. It isn't. As God once said to Cain,
“...sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.” Genesis 4:7.
In Christ Jesus,
Your Brother Christopher Green