The Roman Catholic Church in The Bahamas is part of the worldwide Roman Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the Pope. The diocese was elevated to a full diocese, as the diocese of Nassau in June 1960. On June 22nd, 1999, the diocese was again elevated as the new Archdiocese of Nassau.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Being covered in filth

Something I do not enjoy doing, but found the need to do after several weeks of putting it off was to clean my truck. I am not like some men who can be seen wiping down their vehicles daily, rather I take more time and interest in the servicing of my transportation than the aesthetics. That's more important to me! Every time I begin the task of cleaning I am surprised by how dirty my white truck was that it almost begin to resemble a new vehicle.

As I wiped away the dirt from my truck I began to see beauty once again. The dirt was so thick from accumulation over a period of several weeks that it felt as though I was going through layers of it. I couldn't help think that this is how we must feel when we continue to sin and put on this old self as we move further and further away from God. Our beauty begins to diminish that we no longer feel God's presence and others can also see a change in our attitude.

My truck was sparkling when I was done and it almost looked as though it was smiling back at me. As I drove around, I could see the eyes observing my vehicle because of its shiny coat and glistening black tires. Outer appearance can be very deceiving, but I did not have to concern myself as I consistently kept my vehicle serviced.

Just as we take pride in the appearance of inanimate objects we should be especially concerned how others see our inner self. You wouldn't put on new clothing without first taking a bath, right? I would be more inclined to purchase a vehicle with flawless maintenance records than one that has a beautiful exterior with engine issues from the moment the key turns.

We are all in need of polishing and cleaning around the edges every now and again. When you have put on the garments of Christ it becomes evident not by the exterior of your garments, but by the likeness of Christ that you now resemble. When we approach others there should always be a sense that you are a child of God, that which is in expressed by your words and actions.

My truck does not require that I clean it constantly to show its beauty, however we are required to constantly turn to Christ to seek forgiveness of our sins so that we are able to shine like the Christian he wants us to be. Unlike my truck that can be hidden in a carport or covered with a car cover we are human beings who are weak without Christ and struggle with sin daily. We are always in need of cleansing.

I am reminded of a story by a Priest who tells the story about when he visited a friend on a farm. This day a lamb strayed from the farm so they set out in search of it. When they found it, the friend asked his Priest friend to pick up the sheep to carry it home. In order to carry the lamb the Priest had to place the sheep around his neck while holding on to his legs. Heading back home the sheep kicked about and bleated to the top of his lungs.

While en-route the sheep urinated on the neck of the Priest that ran all down his back and in front of his body and clothing. At this point he felt extremely dirty and could not wait to return to the farm. As he sat in the tub the water got awfully dirty with the urine that floated to the top of the water. The Priest said he began to realize that the baby sheep reminded him of us humans; we constantly kick and screamed and tell Christ in so many words that you can do it (let me down says the sheep), but God does not put us down.

God continues to carry us even when we kick and scream. Sin has become the norm, "everyone's doing it." Sinning should be considered a big deal and not something to be taken lightly. Using the baby sheep as an example, every time we sin by saying "no" to God we can imagine ourselves being carried home by Christ, kicking and screaming at times while urinating on Him for our defiance. As dirty of an illustration that may appear to some it is exactly how we respond when we sin against God. "God I got this, thank you very much." Thankfully God will not put us down until we demand Him too.

Unless your soul is completely dead the feeling of dirty and filth is evident when we are not in touch with Christ. No sin is too great for Christ to forgive and to guide you to complete resolve of it. No matter how dirty I may appear physically on the outside, I try to constantly live my life for Christ. There will be times when I fall, but Jesus is there to pick me up, and through the Holy Spirit, guide me on the path of righteousness. I can be carried by Him or give in to my sinful nature and demand that He put me down. I will certainly deny myself of that new glorious body when He returns, by taking that route. Don't sweat the small things in life about appearance, but rather ensure that you're spotless on the interior.

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