Thursday, January 7, 2016

The Trash We Leave Behind

I have come to the conclusion there are at least two types of people in this world. There are those who go through life leaving a trail of debris behind. And then there those who come after them and pick up the trash.

There is a senior couple I frequently encounter when we drive to our daughter’s house. The two can be seen traipsing along a stretch of country road. The man is carrying a trash bag while the woman uses a long reach pick-up tool to grab pieces of litter along the roadside, depositing the trash into the garbage bag. I have encountered this couple too many times to count. Each time I see them I wonder what motivates this couple to be so concerned about someone else’s trash.

One way to view this scenario is that some people are messy and throw litter out of their car window indiscriminately. The other scenario is some people are neat freaks and dislike things out of place. I can understand this. In the gym I attend, I frequently encounter a sink strewn with shaving cream and beard clippings when I go to wash my hands. I have been tempted to install a sign saying: Clean up after yourself; your mother doesn’t work here!

With the New Year just beginning and the typical round of resolutions we consider, think about the following. Sometimes people leave emotional trash and consequences behind because of their lifestyle. Sometimes people are called to pick up the pieces and help someone get back on their spiritual track. Scripture reminds us there is a time for this and a time for that; a time for every purpose under heaven. Have an open mind to where the Lord calls or pushes you. Be ready to provide a helping hand. But before we take that first step as servant-encourager, we need to look within our own heart.

A good place to start your New Year resolutions is Psalm 51.

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.

Robert Parlante

January 2016

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