We have a curio cabinet that’s filled with family pictures, samples of the children’s artwork and souvenirs from past vacations. It has glass doors so you can see the items inside without opening it. I see that cabinet everyday. Correction: I look at that cabinet everyday. But this morning, I realized that lately, I hadn’t been seeing it at all. Today, I saw it, and noticed that the items inside and the shelves on which they rested were dull and dusty. The cabinet is rarely opened, yet dust had gathered on the inside making the items look neglected.
When I looked at that cabinet, it reminded me of how diligent I have to be when it comes to the condition of my heart. Sometimes
we think that, because we try to guard our hearts (the same way the doors to the curio cabinet usually remain closed) that nothing damaging can get in to dull our sensitivities. But somehow, the unwanted dust particles of impatience, selfishness, ingratitude and anger can creep in unannounced and leave a dulling residue. When that happens, just as with the curio cabinet, it’s time for some deep cleaning.
Cleaning the curio cabinet is pretty straightforward: everything has to be removed so that the shelves and doors can be wiped down with glass cleaner. After that, each item has to be individually wiped, polished or shined before it can be put back in its rightful place. Deep cleaning my heart is a little different.
Deep cleaning my heart requires quiet time before God for inventory taking and soul searching. I’ve got to ask myself some tough questions: Have I been thinking of myself more than others? Have I missed an opportunity to be of service to someone? When was the last time I shared the love of Christ in word or deed?
When I realized the dusty condition of that curio cabinet, I didn’t panic. And when you find things in your heart that shouldn’t be there, you shouldn’t panic, either. It’s simply time to roll up your sleeves and get ready to do some deep cleaning. Just ask God’s forgiveness; thank Him for His grace and move on. This will not be a one-time event. Like that cabinet, my heart requires consistent maintenance. I’m thankful that, just as I’m willing to continue to put in the work with my curio cabinet, God is always willing to continue to work with me.
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