“Like a muddied spring or a polluted well are the righteous who give way to the wicked.” Proverbs 25:26
How muddy is the spring of your heart right now? Is your well polluted by all the cultural toxins seeping in? Or does your spiritual well draw on Living Water as its pure, thirst-quenching source? Here are a handful of toxins that will pollute your well:
Septic Thoughts: If you are looking for the bad and ugly, you will certainly find it. However, if you are determined to find the good and beautiful you will not be disappointed. Too often, our wells are polluted by chronically negative thoughts about others, circumstances, and ourselves, resulting in thought-bondage.
Lethal Language: “Words that do not give the light of Christ increase the darkness.” (Mother Teresa) Your words are either bringing life or death, building up or breaking down. Helpful words build up, but hurtful words crush. What comes out of your mouth was first hiding out in your heart. If you want to empty your mouth of the garbage, you need to start with cleaning up those hidden places in your hearts!
Hazardous Waste: “Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13) Hiding your sin might make life easier in the short run, but it always becomes worse over time. If you hide your sin you can’t receive God’s blessings. Those who confess find mercy and forgiveness.
Green with Envy: Envy is when you resent God’s goodness in other people’s lives and ignore God’s goodness in your own life. Our culture thrives on envy. We want the newest toys, cars, house, etc. We never enjoy what we have because we’re too busy striving to lay hold of what everyone else has. Envy is a serious heart killer. Just take a look at what the book of James says about it: “But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such wisdom does not come from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice” (3:14-16).
Bitter Roots: “Bitterness is like a cancer. It easts upon the host.” (Maya Angelou) Bitterness has a dangerous tendency of justifying itself. It feels right, so we allow its roots to grow deep into our hearts and minds. Bitterness will destroy not only your character, but your relationships in record time. Bitterness will never produce good results, you will only harvest pain, anger, and disappointment.
“Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.” Proverbs 4:23
For more on these “culture toxins” and others, check out the book Soul Detox: Clean Living in a Contaminated Word by Craig Groeschel.