I read an interesting devotional in “Coffee Break” by Sally Noe, which really grabbed my attention. I always appreciate articles that do that. Here’s what she said:
“I was thinking today (I am sure the Lord put the thoughts there) of a car that my mother and I had given to someone. When they first got it, they were very careful to take very good care of it and keep it clean and take care of the maintenance on it. As time went on and the excitement of the gift wore off, they began to spill things in it and not clean them up, leaving stains. Then they started to smoke in it and the car began to smell like a stale cigarette. They started missing some of the routine maintenance needs and the vehicle started having some problems running, until it eventually broke down altogether.”
Why would I look at something like this? Because this happens to our lives. We are all excited at first and take care of the gift of life. Then a mishap occurs and we do not clean it up appropriately and it starts to stain our life. Then we begin to take in things that pollute our bodies, not only things eaten or drunk, but also thoughts and ideas take hold of our thinking. The stories that we hear, the movies we watch, the magazines that we read, the emails that amuse us, are all examples of how little things move into our lives.
After a period of time, we suddenly realize that the car is trashed and does not appear to be worth much. But what can we do about it? We could hire a mechanic and a master detailer to work their magic. They could fix all the broken parts and use special solutions to painstakingly scrub away all the filth. After a period of time, the car would look and run like it is almost new again, and we could start again. But then we might have a spill and are faced with a choice. Do we let it become a horrible mess once again or do we go back to the master detailer and have it cleaned again so that it continues to look nice? Do we have the mechanic do the continual maintenance that is required to keep it running well or let the car break down again?
Our lives are much like this car.
We have a Master who can fix everything that has marred our lives. We have the choice to go to Him and ask Him to clean us up and fix the broken parts. He is there just waiting for the job that He is so good at doing. It will take time and patience as we watch Him work lovingly in our lives and bring us back to health. But we do have a task to complete in this scenario. Just as the materials in the car must yield to the mechanic’s and detailer’s workings, so must we yield to the Master’s working in our life. And to keep our spiritual bodies looking nice, we have to keep up with the required maintenance. We will never stop needing detailed and maintained as long as we are active and being used.
The world is going to sling some garbage at us and people we love will dump on us without even realizing they have done it at times. We have to allow our Master, God, who sent His Son to be with us, to clean us up. It is not the world’s job to do that.
Yes, they sling the mud just like a tire spinning in the mud will splash it up on the car, but we decide if we will leave the mud there and allow it to rust us out or if we will go to the detailer in our life and ask Him to help us remove it and shine it up. I know these things all too well, for I have been in this place too many times in life. Things that happen are sometimes our own fault and many times not. Our response makes all the difference. At times, I have chosen to allow the mud to stick and corrode me from the inside out. It is not a good place to be—afraid to love, afraid to feel, and afraid to fight for happiness.
As long as we live in this world, there will be muddy times. Life won’t always make sense, and may sometimes seem worthless. This is the time to let Jesus in and ask Him to do the master detailing once again. Amen?