Are You Washed?

I haven’t written about the flood for a while, mainly because I haven’t been out and about as much. But yesterday I had the privilege of going out to work with Samaritan’s Purse into the town of Lyons that had so much damage from the flood. The town was cut off. Residents had to be evacuated. Homes were washed away by the raging river. Lives were turned upside down.


Barbara is one such resident.


We spent the day at her home that was cut in half by the river. Her barn now stands on an island. There are massive piles of debris everywhere. Mud is caked up to three feet deep in many areas. A team of 17 people barely made a dent in all that needs to be done. And this is just one home.


We woke yesterday morning to cold temperatures, wind and snow. It wasn’t the ideal situation for working outdoors, but I knew I’d stay warm with the physical labor ahead. However, when we got there and jobs were being issued, the one nobody wanted was left hanging. Washing items found among the debris.


My friend and I volunteered. We knew we’d be cold by the end of the day, but we also knew we’d have some interaction with the homeowner, and that’s important in situations like this.


Flood 2We had to draw water from the river to wash the mud-filled items to “clean” the items that were found in the debris. There was already a workstation put together. Marilyn and I just picked up where the last crew stopped.


I found this to be quite interesting. Each item required a different method for getting the mud off. Some were easiest cleaned if we took them to the river and allowed the raging waters to remove the mud. Others required a good scrubbing with a brush or sponge. While still others were cleaned best when a paint brush was used with a genFlood 1tle touch.


I have found that it’s been like this with my life. When I am in tune with Jesus, at gentle touch is all I need to know that I’ve missed the target and there needs to be some clean up.


Sometimes it’s taken a bit more for me to see the sin in my life and for it to be removed.


But then there have been times when I needed to be taken to the river and dunked to allow the raging waters to get my attention. It’s during these times that I’ve been so stubborn and selfish. When I’ve wanted to hold on to what made me happy. When I’ve turned my back on God and his precepts.


God calls it “stiff-necked.” And there are nineteen such references in Scripture.


In Deuteronomy 10:16 (NIV), God asked Israel to “Circumcise your hearts, therefore, and do not be stiff-necked any longer.” This sounds like a New Testament verse, doesn’t it? Jesus taught that sin begins in the heart. God planted the seed from the beginning. Mankind didn’t listen.


Other actions mentioned in Scripture in relation to being stiff-necked are: wickedness, rebellious, didn’t trust, not submissive, disobedient, stubbornness, turned their backs, refused to listen, not responsive to discipline, and resist the Holy Spirit.


Wow. No wonder a good washing at the river is needed when we are in seasons of such disobedience. There’s a lot to be washed away.


But the good news is that God has no desire for any of us to perish. He is standing on the side of the river holding on tightly to you (and me). He will make sure that the river doesn’t pull you under. And when you come up from this good washing, your heart will indeed be clean and circumcised.


Discipline isn’t fun. But there are times in our lives when that’s exactly what we need. When we are submissive to God’s discipline, we are able to understand the full extent of His love for us. Our relationship with God will be healed. Our relationship with God will be better than before. And our relationship with God will be restored.


There is still much work to be done here in Colorado. The flood clean-up will be on-going for months to come. Just because my life has returned to normal, it doesn’t mean that everyone’s has.


So please keep our efforts in your prayers. Pray for our strength. Pray that we will not grow weary (Galatians 6:9). Pray that the workers will continue to show up each day (regardless of the weather). Pray for financial support to continue. Pray for the safety of the teams that head out each day. Thank you!


Grace and peace be yours in abundance,




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