Thursday, April 24, 2008

Layers Of Goo And The Spirit Of Religion

Although, I usually find myself working in an environment with A/C, desks, and computers, right now I am working on a job that is quite different. I am currently working in a hot warehouse, utilizing tools very different than a computer keyboard. I'm working right now on an industrial grinder. A very, greasy, grimy, dirty, industrial grinder. Layer upon layer of oil, dirt, and goo. The idea is to take it completely apart, clean it up, update its parts, and then put it back together. The finished product will actually be better than when the machine was brand new.

Anyways, while working on the machine this week, I got to thinking. I starting thinking how, the spirit of religion and this multi-layer of goo is not all that different. I'm not sure how long that machine was in operation, but I am certain it's been a good little while. Slowly but surely over time the oil, dirt, and goo built up making the actual machine look very different than when it was brand new.

In the same way, religion can do the same with us if we are not careful. Prior to salvation, the enemy will stop at nothing to prevent us from becoming a believer. However, after salvation, I think his strategy changes to one of deceiving us with religious ideas that sound good but are far from scriptural. Slowly, but surely these lies begin to mount up. Layer upon layer, just like the goo on the machine, this religious goo builds up making it very difficult to remember what the original looked like.

Let me clarify by giving a couple of examples. In the beginning, we understand salvation is not of works but a result of grace. But, somewhere along the way we often get this mindset that salvation is maintained by works. Yep, its a layer of goo. Or, check out this one. We get saved, again by God's grace, and are doing good at living a godly life so we put ourselves on a petty-stool having "earned" a position a bit higher than others. Goo! Then there's the attitude that because our church's doctrine or theology is right, all other's don't quite match up. Again, just goo. Can you see how far off we can get? And to think it all starts with just one little layer.

This past week, I've been up to my neck in dirty, oily, goo. But it doesn't come close to the thick religious goo I've been acquainted with over the course of my life. The goo this week came off with some Gojo, Lava soap, and a bit of elbow grease. Unfortunately, religious goo doesn't come off that easy. For some it takes years, and for others it never comes off. We need to constantly pray that God open our eyes to religious mind sets and ideals that didn't come from Him. And then, we must be willing to allow Him to use some Holy Spirit Gojo and wash that religious goo off.

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