As a boy, I liked to squirrel hunt in the hickory grove about a mile behind my grandmother’s house. In the grove, someone had chiseled a basin in a ledge of rock below a spring where you could get a cool drink. My older brother told me to always check the spring above the basin before drinking. There could be animal droppings or other contaminants in the spring.
That situation, like so many of my experiences across the years, served as a life lesson. This physical event easily translated into the spiritual truth. A quote by Joseph S. Exell illustrates the lesson: “Impurities in the springs of thought will be revealed in the streams of action.”
God’s word serves to establish this foundational truth. Jesus prayed for His disciples, “Sanctify (purify) them by Your truth; Your word is truth” (John 17:17, NKJV). In other words, cleanse the wellspring of their hearts. Let me share two scriptures that relate directly to the point of impurities in the spring of man’s thought:
- “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it” (Proverbs 4:23, NIV).
- “For from within the hearts of men come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, debauchery, envy, slander, arrogance, and foolishness. All these evils come from within, and these are what defile a man” (Mark 7:21-23, NIV).
Have you ever caught yourself wondering, “Why did I say that?” or “Why did I do that?” Perhaps you have been at a loss to explain uncharacteristic behavior on your part. Maybe someone close to you has said, “That’s just not like you.” For the answer, check the the spring. Impurities in the heart ‘spring’ reveal themselves in your actions.
May the words of Brian Doerksen’s song “Purify My Heart” be our prayer:
Purify my heart,
Cleanse me from within
And make me holy.
Purify my heart,
Cleanse me from my sin, deep within.
~ Brother Roy