|Photo by Susan Norris|
Something Stinks In There
By Susan Norris
Do you have a sensitive nose? I do. I can smell when something’s off quickly. I opened the pantry and knew there was a problem. The smell was of something rotting. Now I normally go right to where I keep the potatoes or onions, because they are the only produce in the pantry and I can usually solve the problem quickly, but the potatoes and onions I found in the baskets were fresh. The smell was still there. Could it be in the trash? After taking the trash out, wiping the trashcan down and putting in a new trash bag, I knew it wasn’t the trash stinking up the pantry. Through some investigation, I found it . . . a runaway sweet potato that had rolled to the back of the pantry, hidden behind other things. It was squishy to the touch (yuck), but once it was removed and disposed of, the stench in the pantry evaporated.
We can be like the pantry. We can go through life with something hidden, we haven’t dealt with, we haven’t been able or willing to remove, and if left long enough it begins to stink. It will impact every facet of our lives, whether we realize it or not. It could be a sin we’ve committed or something that was done to us that wounded us badly. Either way, if it isn’t removed, it will contaminate everything else in our lives. We can only keep it hidden so long. If we don’t discover it, the stench will make its presence known.
Yesterday, I had the privilege of assisting a brave young lady take the first step in cleaning out her pantry of life. She is a victim of human sex trafficking. Not only did she have many vile things happen to her, she was forced to do things she wouldn’t have chosen to do on her own. The fact that she did them has covered her in shame and humiliation long enough. She chose to trust the One who has pursued her with a pure love to help her find the rotting things that need to be removed from her life [Jeremiah 31:3] .
Nothing is hidden from God [Hebrews 4:13]. Just as He told Jeremiah He would uncover Esau’s hiding place and remove him, He will uncover the hidden things in my young friend’s life and remove them as far as the east is from the west [Jeremiah 49:10, Psalm 103:12]. He is for her, and He is for us too [Romans 8:31-39]. He loves her and will gently help her find her way, warring for her when necessary, to bring her into complete freedom. She may have entered a treatment center as a victim, but if she will allow the Lord to do the necessary work in her life, she will emerge a survivor! Jesus will make sure of it. He will do the same for anyone who will call upon His name [Psalm 50:15. Psalm 91:15, Jeremiah 29:12].
|Photo by Susan Norris|
What does your pantry of life smell like? Is there something rotting in there that needs to be uncovered and removed? You have a loving and gentle Father who desperately wants to clean it out of your life. He doesn’t use harsh chemicals to do the job. He uses love and His blood, which cleanses even the hardest stains [Psalm 51:1-7]. He’s more dependable than the Maids of Honor. One call, that’s all!