Cleaning the Mold out of My Heart
When I started this blog, I recognized that I was in a season of growth in my life. I’ve been going through a lot of transitions in the past few years. I went from being single to being married. Then I graduated from an elite university, and starting working in a field that is considered (by most) to be not-so-elite: ministry. Then, I had a baby, and made the transition to motherhood (do people view this as more or less elite than ministry?), which was(is) definitely the hardest transition so far.
I thought to myself, this is a stage of my life where I will do a lot of growing, and learn a lot. I would love to document those lessons, and also share them with others. I can do this by writing a blog!
It seemed like a really good idea. I could practice my writing, and learn more about websites and stuff, which I’m pretty clueless about. I made a commitment to myself that I would post something at least every seven days.
Well, it’s been more than seven days, and there are a couple reasons for that. Number one, last week was Thanksgiving, so I was out of town and with family and didn’t want to take the time to write something. Number two, I realized that writing about my own growth means that I will have to write bad stuff about myself for everyone to read. I didn’t really feel like doing that, and I’m still not all that excited about it, but in order to hold to my original purpose in writing, I have to! So here goes…
About two months ago, I noticed something that resembled mold on the top of my couch. It also kind of smelled like mold. I took a rag and scrubbed it off, until I couldn’t see it anymore. But I kept smelling this moldy smell in different parts of the house. I was ignoring it, hoping it would go away…but it didn’t. Finally, I investigated further and found that there was a lot of mold on the back of the couch, and in a few other locations in the apartment. It was going to lots of work to tackle this overwhelming problem, and the longer I ignored it, the bigger it became.
In my heart, there is mold too, and that mold is discontentment. This is always something that I’ve struggled with, and it manifests itself in different ways at different times. Sometimes it’s worry, negativity, disappointment, complaining, dreading, sarcasm, frustration, but whatever it is, negative feelings in my heart and thoughts in my mind come pouring out as negative words and negative emotions.
During this season of my life, a lot of different things have led me to feel disappointed and frustrated, and as I’ve let those feelings stay around, instead of really dealing with them, they’ve only grown worse.
The mold in the apartment is gone now. We had to take the entire couch outside and scrub it with vinegar (luckily the mold was only on the surface, so the couch wasn’t ruined) and then leave it outside in the sun for a few days. We also had to scrub and air-out a lot of other items, and even through some away. It was a lot of work, and the work isn’t over now that the mold is gone. It could return at any time! I don’t know what caused it, but I suspect it was the fact that Houston is really damp and humid, and that’s not going to change. So now we vigilantly run the ceiling fans, especially after it rains, and are careful to keep the blinds open during the day to let as much light in as possible.
I’m afraid to really deal with my recurring discontentment, because it seems like it will be a lot of work too. And it seems like the work of dealing with it will never really be finished, because I will have to always be on the lookout for any signs that it might be returning, and take constant precaution to ensure that it does not.
But in the midst of this, I’m thankful that I’m not on my own when it comes to working through my problems. Philippians 1:6 says:
He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
God is working on me, and I’m thankful that He cares about me enough to show me what areas I need to work on. I’m thankful that He’s given me the Holy Spirit to help me with the hard work of growth. And I hope that I’m truly on a journey that will cleanse my life of the mold of discontentment for good.
Is there mold in your heart that you are tempted to ignore, because it will be too hard to deal with?