Today’s scripture: 1 John 1:9 (NRSV) (The Message) (KJV) What might God be saying to me?

My thoughts (Steve Adams):

Isn’t there something about the purity of God that’s like nothing else in all of life?

We approach it — we experience it (at least as much of it as we can fathom) — and we’re thrilled and refreshed beyond measure. Then we go back to the challenges of life — the work, the responsibilities, the mistakes (ours and other people’s), falling short, being rushed, enduring rudeness from others, being rude to others, forgetting, regretting, hustling to make the next deadline — I know you know what I mean!

When that happens, we get bombarded with a lot of spiritual crud. And when it continues for a long period of time, we can get pulled off course. We may find ourselves craving something unwise, eventually choosing it. The tempter entices us with unwise pleasures  after we’ve become weakened and worn down from the world. Even our desires and intentions get polluted!

For specifics, I’ll have to ask you to fill in the blank here. What is it that you choose when you’re weak that costs you spiritually? Something you pay a price for later?

So what’s the solution? Well, Jesus said “Blessed are the pure of heart, for they’ll see God.” We simply need to get back to the purity of God in the deepest, most intimate part of our psyches.

What works for you? For me, getting quiet and alone for awhile (or the opposite — getting together with loved ones), going into “thankful mode,” taking time to breathe fully and stretch (yoga), reciting some Bible verses, reading a spiritually nutritious book, going to Sunday church service, spending time with my husband, and taking a walk in the gardens of the Indianapolis Museum of Art campus, are the best.

We experience a wonderful freedom and intimacy with God when we confess our sins — where we’ve missed the mark, fallen short, and separated our hearts from God. 1 John 1:8 exhorts us to confess our sins. The result: we are cleansed from all unrighteousness — the spiritual crud! I can’t control whether someone else is acting in a spiritually dirty (sinful) way toward me, but I CAN control my heart, making sure it’s open to all the purity of God!

Thought for the day: Proverbs 4:23 exhorts us to guard our hearts with all vigilance, because from our hearts flow the issues of life. What can I do today that will help my heart reside in the purity of God?

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the suggestions on the How to Pray page.