Do you remember learning about sediment in science class? You know, you took a jar filled with dirt, pebbles, sand, and water and shook it until it was a muddied, swirling concoction. Then you placed it on a table for a few hours, and when you next saw it, the water was crystal clear on the top and all of the other ingredients had settled into distinct layers on the bottom.
The action of agitating, disturbing, and stirring up is the English verb "roil" [l learned a new word today!] In John 14, Jesus encourages and comforts His disciples. He speaks about being one with the Father and explains the role of the Holy Spirit. In verse 27, He says, "Do not let your heart be troubled [roiled], nor let it be fearful."
Yesterday, I found myself riled up and a bit stressed. This was nothing major, just typical life issues, circumstances, and frustrations. But in the midst of it all, I realized that in my turmoil, some things were coming to the surface that needed to be dealt with. My heart was being shaken a bit, and I lost peace.
Jesus's admonition is that our hearts not be constantly agitated, steeped in toxicity, chaotically stirred up or in a state of inward commotion which in part or whole might lead to dread, fear, or faithlessness.
Yes, the world around us is hard to manage at times, but we have been equipped to deal with it.
Perhaps when we find ourselves in this riled up state and when we aren't "dealing" with it as we could, it makes for a good time to examine what has been settling in our hearts.
Is there any "sediment" there that we need to clear away? When hard times come our way and agitate our heart and mind, can we try to isolate something swirling around or floating to the surface?
I was in a bit of a funk and couldn't quite handle the examination at that moment, but believe me, I have learned that if I don't deal with it at some point, it will surface again next time I'm bumped.
Although some negative mindsets and wounds may be more firmly rooted in our hearts, if we recognize them and partner with the Lord in dealing with them, we can be healed and restored, down to the smallest of particles.
Practicing what I preach isn't always easy. Even this morning, I neglected to start my day with a grateful heart. Gratitude, after all, is a powerful antidote to a troubled heart.
It seems we cannot be both grateful and troubled at the same time.
Choosing gratitude stops the swirling and churning and allows us to regroup and humbly take on the proper perspective to deal with the problems we face.
Thank goodness, God is patient and loves us through our desire to become more like Him no matter how messy it may feel. We are on a journey. We are trying our hardest. Let's be kind to ourselves along the way.
“He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said,
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