Recently, while three of our young grandchildren were fishing (with adult assistance), they were delighted to catch some trout. Later, they learned that before the fish could be cooked, it had to be gutted and cleaned. They also learned that it takes skill to properly fillet the fish, removing the many tiny bones. In short, catching the fish is fun, but then there’s work and skill involved in preparing the fish to be eaten.
This reminded me of my relationship with God. Fellowship with Him is the fun part (enjoying His company in beautiful surroundings). But am I willing to let Him cleanse me of my sins? First, like the fish, I have to “die” (to self). Then I must allow God to cut out the sins in my life–both the major ones (like being “gutted”) and the less obvious ones (the tiny bones). This is usually accomplished through difficult and painful trials that give me insight into myself and develop godly characteristics like humility and perseverance. I confess that I’m a lot like my grandchildren. I enjoy the “fun” parts of a relationship with God but I’m not as eager to go through the cleansing process. However, it truly is my heart’s desire to please Him, so I will prayerfully do my best to allow Him to “fillet” my soul.
Dear Lord, please help me to enjoy the good times with You, but also to trust You in the hard times, knowing that You are just cleansing me and helping me to become all that You created me to be.