Now I have a better understanding about "walk by faith and not by sight". I had to vacuum that dark brown pool. The first step was to use the leaf sucker-upper. This device attaches to the hose and you then guide it over the biggest piles (which you can't see) in the bottom of the pool. The bottom was not in sight at all. I could see darker areas. I hauled out a lot of leaves. Then I vacuumed. I still could not see the bottom--in fact I had stirred up enough stuff that it was now even more murky! I just followed my usual pattern of vacuuming. It took longer than usual, but it was beginning to clear.
- Lesson # 1 Work on the biggest areas of sin in your life first. They are what make your life so dark and ugly. Getting rid of them may seem to make life even more murky for a while. Once they are out of the way, you can begin to work on other areas. Even though it takes longer, as long as you are following the pattern God has given us for living--life does begin to take on a clearer look.
- Lesson # 2 My life, without Jesus, is like that dark ugly pool with floaties. Jesus' blood is the "chlorine" that works to take out all the darkness and leaves us crystal clear.
- Lesson # 3 Even with all the "chlorine", if I hadn't vacuumed, the pool would still be dark and ugly. God tells us to "work out your own salvation with fear and trembling". We must be willing to vacuum all the darkness out of our lives so that the "chlorine" of his blood can make us crystal clear. Without His blood, all the vacuuming in the world would still leave us dark and ugly.
- Lesson # 4 We don't have to wonder if the chlorine (His blood) is working. Less that 15 hours later, I took the "AFTER" picture posted here. His blood transforms us and makes us into a new creature--and anyone who looks at us can see the difference.
- Lesson # 5 It takes constant care to keep our souls clean. The pool guy comes once a week--we take the Lord's supper once a week--and are reminded of what His blood does for our lives. But should we quit remembering, quit vacuuming out the bad, our lives will once again turn brown with floaties. It is a constant process.
- Lesson # 6 We leave the pool pump on 24 hours a day to filter the pool. Everything we think and do should be filtered through Him. Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable...think about [and do] such things.
Pretty good lessons from a dirtly 'ole pool.