Yesterday was the last day of school and the amount of papers that was thrown away was out of this world. You could see recycling piling up and heaps of paper everywhere. Recycling is good. I recycle all the time. As I was driving home I kept thinking about how we sometimes recycle things in our lives. The problem is that at times we try to recycle things that the Lord wants us to throw away. He is ready to replace them with better things but we cling on to them and we try to use them again when in reality they have already served their purpose. I am not just talking about material things but I am also referring to relationships or habits that we need to get rid of. When we accept the Lord or when we have an encounter with Him, we are not the same. The impact of the Lord on our lives is transformative and uplifting. However, our old thoughts and our old patterns need to be thrown away. It’s easy to cling on to our old ways but in order to make progress in our Christian walk, the spiritual recycle bin is for good things and the negative things go to the spiritual trash can.
Spiritual growth is a long process that requires work and help from the Holy Spirit. It implies being admonished by the Lord and having our eyes opened to the truth so we can reach a higher level of clarity and confidence in the Lord. When the Holy Spirit opens your eyes, you might have to let go of what He is showing you. You might have to give up old baggage that only weighs you down spiritually. I suggest you pray to receive the enlightenment you need to see where a change is needed. We can easily become hoarders. We pile up things without sorting them out. We keep the good, the bad and the ugly and if we have little discernment, we keep it all in one place when it should all be separated. We should have a pile of what we should keep and a pile of what we need to throw away. Separating ourselves from the needless burdens requires a clean break from them. There is no need for recycling the bad and trying to use it again in a different form.
Let’s say a woman named Stephanie was in a toxic relationship. When Stephanie accepted the Lord, she tried to stay in that abusive relationship claiming she could change the man. God showed her that it was time to move away from that man because He had someone else that was the right match for her. She kept on going back to him using the recycling approach. “He was good once so he can be good again” was her reasoning. After a while Stephanie starts losing her faith because the man keeps hurting her. In the meantime the Lord has been whispering that she shouldn’t recycle but she should let Him replace the man. This is just a fictitious example but you get my point. We all have toxic relationships with certain people or with certain practices or habits that we need to throw away and not recycle. Addictive behaviors shouldn’t be recycled and traded for other addictive behaviors that seem less harmful. God can help us in all situations. Recycle positive thoughts. Recycle love. Recycle the good and let go of the bad. God has something better for you. Trust Him!
Suggested reading: Romans 12:2; Philippians 4:8; Ephesians 4:22-32