Monday, February 11, 2013

A Sink Full of Bubbles

The other day I asked Emma, my precious 7 year old if she had washed her hands. She told me that she had. Being a professional father, though, I knew I'd better pry a little deeper. I asked had she washed her hands thoroughly and had she used soap. She said, "Oh yeah. The sink was full of bubbles." In her mind if the sink was full of bubbles then it followed that her hands just had to be clean.
Of course, a sink full of bubbles doesn't necessarily equal clean hands. You can do a lot of things that fill the sink with bubbles and never get around to cleaning your hands. The issue is not whether the soap got in the sink; the issue is whether the soap got on your hands.
I've noticed in my own life that spiritually speaking, it's easier to fill the sink with bubbles than it is to truly and honestly walk with Jesus. I can do lots of religious looking things. I can get on my knees when I pray. I can go to church. I can say the right words. But what do all these things have in common? They are all things I can do outwardly. And if the gospel shows us anything it's that Jesus is more concerned with who we are on the inside that with what we do on the outside. It's not that what we do doesn't matter, it's that what we do must flow out of who we are. Jesus hasn't come to give us greater willpower. He has come to recreate us into His image. He hasn't come to encourage us to obey, He had come to give us hearts that want to obey. If If my focus is only on the outside then I'm just filling the sink up with bubbles, i.e. it may look like I'm doing what Jesus wants of me but I'm just putting on a show.
My prayer is that God would continually break me of my religious habits and daily conform me to His image; that I wouldn't be content with the outward form of religion but that I would love Him--really love Him, not just talk about it--more and more each day; that I would continually be swept away by the greatness of King Jesus and follow hard after Him and fight viciously against everything that hinders that walk.

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