Over the last few weeks I have been experiencing the frustration that results from a bathtub that does not drain. Well, I may be overstating the case just a bit---it does drain, but not until you have showered, wading in water half way up your shins.
While normally I would agree that there should be a fairly simple, though disgusting, solution to this problem, it does not seem so in this case. Maybe I am just being more than a little blond, but I can't seem to find any way to easily clean the drain. It is a closed system from the top---no simple screws to turn. The only thing I can think of is to go down into the crawl space and try to open the trap down there. Uuggg.
I have tried drain cleaner and that has been less than successful. Since this is the only tub/shower in the house it is well-used and definitely needs a working drain. The crawl space is probably the best idea, but never having gone in it myself I am having visions of all the creatures I will encounter while making my way to a trap, certain to contain all kinds of treasure I don't want to find, if I can even unscrew it.
It does seem that my mind works in somewhat strange and mysterious ways, because once again the Lord brought to my mind a comparison. He reminded me of all the years of my life when I struggled to find any spiritual growth. My frustration was frequently great because I felt I should be further along in the life I had chosen as a child---that of a Christian, a follower of Christ.
The verses in Hebrews spoke of my spiritual condition. "For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again....and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat."
Repeatedly I asked the Lord to help me grow in Him, but any progress seemed temporary, and my frustration grew. Sometimes to the point of questioning God's love for me, perhaps even His existence, I am ashamed to say. I felt dead inside because I did not have good fellowship with Him.
The Lord had not changed, but something had come between us. Little by little the Lord has revealed hurts and the resulting bitterness that had wedged themselves in between. Most were not affected by my simple, unbelieving prayers, but had to be revealed in all of their ugliness in order to be dealt with. Circumstances that washed over me and I thought had gone down the drain of life, but that in reality never went very far away.
Those things will always block our fellowship with our Saviour. If not dealt with immediately, they just continue to build up. Some I never even realized were issues in my mind. Until we allow Him to open up our secret places, we continue to live as struggling, baby Christians. For how can we teach others if we have not allowed Him to heal us? We can't.
Once we give ourselves over to Him, secret rooms full of hurts and all, He gently shows us where we fail. And then He gives us the grace to hand all of it back to Him---and He takes it away. Fellowship can be sweet again. Sometimes it takes going through some pain for the sweetness to return, but it is worth it.
Now I pray that He will strengthen me to no longer be a babe, but that I might be used of Him in the way that He means for me to be. That I will be able to eat the "strong meat that belongeth to them that are of full age". (Heb. 5:14)
"Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee." (Ps. 51:10-13)
How sad if we live our entire lives and never accomplish the mission God has for us here, because we failed to see the sin in our lives blocking us from His blessing.