The process was uncomfortable. Painful. The infection had to be drained from the wound and several supportive stitches added to draw the skin back together. Time for the healing to begin again so I can get back to using my muscles like they were meant to be used!
The incision had been healing nicely. But then the site started to bleed, and the skin around the sutures became red and irritated. What was going on? My husband, Steve, had done an excellent job cleaning the area and covering it with the sterile bandages. Maybe I was just being paranoid, and this was all a part of the healing process. But each time Steve changed the dressing, I couldn't help flinching when even the slightest pressure was applied to the wound.
After a few days, I finally called my dermatologist. When I described what was going on, the receptionist told me it was very likely that an infection had developed. Oral antibiotics and topical antibiotic ointment were prescribed, and I was told to head over to the emergency room if I began vomiting or running a fever. Fortunately, the antibiotics worked, so I was able to avoid a trip to the hospital.
Sin in my life can act a lot like an infection. I don't give it much thought at first, but when it begins to cause some damage, I can no longer ignore it. I have a choice to make: allow it to fester, causing additional damage, or purge it from my system.
Throughout the Bible, God draws a parallel between leaven, or yeast, and sin. In the New Testament, the Apostle Paul states very clearly, "Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened," (1 Corinthians 5:6-7a; KJV). When yeast is added to bread dough, it rises. It's impossible for only part of the dough to rise. All of it WILL be affected.
This principle holds true in my life as well. When I allow sin in my life, it has the characteristics of yeast, spreading in my life, much like an infection. It affects my relationship with God and can even affect those around me. Time to call on the Lord for help. Purging sin from my life is the only way fellowship can be restored with my Savior. "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness," (1 John 1:9).
Purging sin from my life has an added benefit - God can once again use me to point others to Jesus Christ. Timothy clarifies this point, "Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity...If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work," (2 Timothy 2:19, 21).
Today I'm eager to examine my life and purge any sin that will cause 'infection.' And to become a sanctified vessel of honor, ready to be used by my Master!
Is sin causing an 'infection' in your life? What steps will you take to purge sin from your life today?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for reminding me of the importance of purging sin from my life. Help me to pray with the Psalmist, David, "Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting," (Psalm 139:23-24). In Jesus' name, Amen.