Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Foggy Mirrors

I’ve mentioned before that our house is not terribly young. As a result, it is designed much more for function than for form. As a result, the bathrooms are very simple, and not too large. What that basically means is that you get what you need, and nothing more. With the exception of some really nice tile work that a good friend did for us, they are very basic. In the Master Bath, the ceiling is literally about seven feet, and you can pretty much touch both walls at the same time if you stand in the middle of the room. There is only a stand-up shower, a toilet, and a sink. There is a vent, but because the room is so small, if anyone takes a hot shower, the mirror in there still fogs up pretty quickly.

About a year ago, I discovered one trick to kind of help with that. We have a little tower fan that stands about eighteen inches high, and we have a little towel rack/shelf combo on the wall perpendicular to the mirror. If we run the fan pointed directly at the mirror while we shower, as well as running the vent, we have no fog, and can see when we get out. However, if you forget to turn on the tower fan, it still takes awhile to de-fog after the steamy shower. Just goes to show that a little preparation goes along way.

I tend to see the world in a way that shows me even little applications that relate back to Biblical principles. I believe it is a blessing that God gives me. Unless it’s one of those times I’m smacked in the head about how I’m doing it wrong. Then I don’t like it so much.

There are definitely things that happen in life that we don’t see coming. If we live every day expecting tragedy and heartache, then we miss out on the abundant life that is available for followers of Christ, as He told us in John 10:10. However, since we also know that things come out of the blue, there are some things we can do in a general sense that will help. As the old saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth an apple a day.” Or something like that.

If you read the book of Daniel, you get a glimpse of a man and his friends who were committed to following God no matter what the consequences were. As it turns out, the consequences were death sentences in more than one of those stories, and yet, God showed up and saved the day. I think you can trace it back to one little verse. Daniel 1:8 says, “But Daniel resolved not to defile himself…” In this context, it was a resolution not to eat the food of the King, which because of the way it was prepared, would have been a direct violation of God’s laws.

However, I believe that goes to a deeper issue than just the food. Having been captured and brought to a place where any and all things of a “worldly” nature would have been made available to Daniel, and none of which would have been honoring to God, Daniel made his decision not to dishonor God, no matter what. The words that we translate as “resolved,” or “Made up his mind” in some translations, are Hebrew words that literally mean “to set, ordain, establish, or determine the inclination, resolution, determination of will, conscience, or heart of moral character.” (See why there are so many English Translations and versions?)

In other words, if you’ll indulge me, Daniel decided that no matter what came his way in this little Babylonian adventure, He would honor God first and foremost--even if it cost him his life. Daniel was making some preparations. The food being offered made it very clear to him that in this place away from home, there would be many things within his reach that appealed to his flesh, but were sinful in God’s eyes. He wanted to Honor God, so he established his spiritual and moral boundaries in anticipation of what could possibly happen. As a result, you can read that Daniel not only stayed faithful to God, but earned respect and audience from, and outlived three different kings in the process.

No, we don’t know what this life will bring, but by now, it should be very obvious to anyone that our culture makes sure we have readily available many worldly things. In a consumer world, if we have the cash, we can have the stash. If we’re willing to pay enough, and look in the right places, we can pretty much get whatever we want. This is NOT a good thing, and if we have not already determined and set the inclinations of our inner heart towards the things of God, we might find ourselves up to our eyeballs in sinful behavior.

Our mirrors will be exposed to the steam of this world. Our decision to be prepared and keep the fan on may be what it takes to keep us from getting covered in a sinful “fog.” The more “foggy” things become, the more difficult to even see your sin issues.

What is your fan? Is it reading the Word of God? Is it remaining active in a faith community at church? Are you praying that you will spot the extra-humid places before it’s too late? Do you have friends that will hold you accountable to your “fan plan?” Whatever you choose to do, do something. Be proactive, and keep your heart set to honor God, no matter what.

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