What kind of filter do you use? For your water faucet? Your windows? Your camera and photos? Your internet use? Your mind? Your mouth?
Life without filters? Who knows what might get into our bodies!
And what might get into our minds and hearts, too.
Not so long ago, I lived without filters. I said whatever I wanted to say, using whatever language I wanted to use. I went wherever I wanted to go without regard for the atmosphere I would find there. I did whatever I wanted to do with whomever I chose.
My rebelliousness had free reign. And I thought I was having fun.
Then Jesus got hold of me. With a summer thunderstorm in Phoenix. With my neighbor named Terri. With a preacher named Gene.
With Colossians 2.
I used to believe that a person does not and cannot change. That we are who we are from conception to death.
But I missed the rest of the story. The Holy Spirit can change a person. God’s Word can become that filter to cleanse us.
That’s what happened to me.
When I was 40, I finally believed the absolute truth of God’s Word. I gave my entire life to Christ. No more useless avoidance games. No more rebellious actions with dicey or dire consequences. No more disregard for relationships and serving self instead of others.
Now, though, I have to deal with guilt and regret. Two of my most unwelcome companions. God and his Word are helping me face down those demons when they attack. Every day.
When I look at the condition of my life with no filter, I can barely believe that was me.
When I look at the condition of my life now that I know filter, I thank God every time.
I know it may sound prudish or naïve or overly optimistic. I need a filter. For my tongue, my mind, my emotions, even my heart. All the time. Because the root of me with all its rottenness is always threatening to blossom, grow, and take hold.
After all the agony of my past behavior, that’s the last thing I want.
Know filter. Jesus. Holy Spirit. God in his Word. That’s what I need. That what you need. More than anything else.
“And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. 7 Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness” (Colossians 2:6-7).
Laura Warfel is a widow, writer, and follower of Jesus Christ. Her greatest joy is to bring others along with her on her faith journey. In 2015, because of the encouragement of the Launch Out Conference and Jon Acuff, she launched More Than A Widow on Facebook and Twitter. Today she blogs, tweets, and posts to help widows (and those who know them) find encouragement, hope, and resources for the journey. Her goal is to help all widows live beyond the label and live as more than a widow.
Copyright © 2016 by Laura Warfel