Sunday, October 12, 2008

Living In A Toxic Environment

There is much talk today about our environment.  I am concerned about the water I drink and the air that I breathe.  I want my grandchildren to grow up on a clean planet, with clean lakes and rivers, and I am doing as much as I can to help accomplish that.

But, I wonder whether I am just as concerned about other pollutants in my environment. What about the "moral climate" in which I live?  

Do you know that there are some people that are toxic. Do any of you know what I am talking about? Think of some of the people that you enjoy seeing and hanging out with.  

Do they build you up spiritually?  

Is your walk with the Lord stronger as a result of being with them? 

Or, is it weaker?  

I have some friends that I love to hang out with, but God has shown me that I need to distance myself from them. I am not stronger spiritually as a result of having been with them.

I used to tell my children when they were younger, "You become like those you hang around." Did you know that is a scriptural principle?  I Corinthians 15:33 says, "Do not be deceived; Bad company corrupts good morals." How many times I have seen this to be true in my own life and in the lives of my children and it happens so quickly and with such subtlety.

There are also toxic places that need to be avoided. There are websites that we need to avoid.  There are certain books and magazines that need to be off-limits. There are movies that we need to avoid because they "contaminate" our minds. 

Proverbs 4:26 says, "Watch the path of your feet."

I wonder, would we relocate our family to a place that we knew was a toxic waste dump?  Would we plan to spend our family vacations there?  Of course not, and yet, there are many places that we go, television shows that we watch, and things that we read that are JUST as toxic to our souls!

So the question is, "How can we remain uncontaminated in this world in which we live? I believe that the answer can be found in Psalm 119:9-11:

How can a young man keep his way pure?
By keeping it according to Thy word.
With all my heart I have sought Thee;
Do not let me wander from Thy commandments.
Thy word I have treasured in my heart,
That I may not sin against Thee.

God, make me sensitive to the places I go, the people that I am with and the things that I do. Help me to remember that I will become like those I hang around and help me to surround myself with friends that make me spiritually stronger as a result of having been around them. I pray that Your Word might be hidden in my heart so that I will immediately recognize things in my environment that are not healthy for me or my family. Strengthen me and give me the courage to walk away from these things. Help me to keep my way pure by keeping it according to Your Word. Amen.


Heather said...

I love this.....I am always amazed at how God reminds me in my spirit (and I can see it in my actions, too, unfortunately) when I have been around people or somewhere "toxic." I pray that I will always be aware of I can get out! It's hard to believe we are so easily influenced...but we are. I notice it a lot with television....I MUST counter my TV with time spent in God's Word. Otherwise, there is too much "waste" inside of me and not enough of HIM!

Kristen said...

This was a great post! I love how God reminds us of this, and even when we get a little deep in the waste, rescues us and cleanse us off! Thanks for reminder to keep my eyes open and not get too comfortable!

Jenna said...

SO SO SO true!!! Thanks for this post - it is so important and such a hard lesson to learn sometimes. And the world these days don't make it any easier. Thanks for the reminder!

petrii said...

What a GREAT post!!! I needed to be reminded of this.

A few years ago I stopped watching movies for the most part. I will watch one, once in a while, but I'm very picky about it. And if I start watching one I think is okay, but it isn't I don't continue.

I needed this reminder today. Thank you for sharing this. You are a very profound writer friend.

Have a Blessed week, Dawn

Faith said...

So, so true Mom. I have definitely been around toxic people before, and it makes me so much more thankful for the awesome friends I have now. I needed the reminder about other toxic things that I allow into my life. God has convicted me of some of those things in the past and I have been disobedient in giving them up. I don't want that to be the "one thing" like we talked about at church today.

Thank you mom, I love the way you teach what God is showing you through His Word. I love you too!

Naturally Caffeinated Family said...

Hi Mimi, thank you so much for visiting and leaving such a sweet comment! This is a great post and so true. Hubby and I have talked a lot about this over the past several years, GREAT reminder! You have a wonderful blog too! (and so does your awesome daughter!)

Amy (Metz) Walker said...

Great post! My husband reminds me of the same thing...And thanks for stopping by my blog! I'm so glad you did!

judy said...

Thank you for a wonderful post.
So true! I love it when God speaks to me and lets me know whatever or whomever is NOT what I need in my life.

He protects His children so we need to put on our 'spiritual ears' and listen. :)

Be still and know that HE is God.

Lianna Knight said...

Such a powerful message and so so true! Thanks for reminding me that it's okay to distance myself from people that are bringing me down.

Blessings to you!

Hollie said...

Thanks for that great post.
It is so very true. Our preacher always says that if the people you hang with aren't building you up (spriritually), then they are in fact bringing you down whether you realize it or not, there is no middle ground (like saying they have NO effect on you).

I loved the prayer at the end.
Oh how I wish we lived near each other so we could meet once every couple of weeks for coffee and inspiration.
I love your blog.

Harris Family said...

Wow! What great words and what a great reminder! I definitely know what you are talking about and can relate! I often get too consumed with in the world.