My husband and I drove the 30 miles to town today to do the weekly shopping and get some last-minute ingredients for our Thanksgiving dinner. And a spiritual lesson, as it turned out. It was a beautiful morning, crisp and cool, and the trees along the Merced River were finally turning the beautiful colors of yellow, orange and red. Fall has been late in coming to our corner of the world this year.
Our first stop was Costco and, in addition to shopping for groceries, we decided to check out the flat screen TVs. Gosh, I guess they are all flat-screen today, aren’t they? That just goes to show how much things have changed during my life.
When I was growing up, a TV set was a boxy piece of furniture and usually had a 19 or 21 inch screen. The first TV I remember had a black-and-white picture and an antenna for bringing in that signal. When I was 8, we got our first color TV and my world changed forever. Until that moment, I never knew Gilligan’s polo shirt was red.
In 2007, Mitch and I bought a 55” plasma TV that was very-high tech at the time. It has served us well over the years but recently, the sound has begun to go out on it. And that is why we found ourselves staring at the rows and rows of hi-definition LED panels at Costco today.
We both agreed that we do not need the latest and greatest model. After all, anything we get will be light years ahead of what we have. And we did manage to find one with a gorgeous display that makes our old TV hang its virtual head in shame.
Garbage In, Garbage Out
We stood there for a time, quietly admiring the display of colorful and far-away landscapes. Then my husband said, “You know, the picture won’t look nearly as good when we get it home because everything we watch is on Netflix or Amazon. And an internet signal doesn’t support that kind of hi-definition picture.” (You see, we don’t have cable and have no intention of getting it.) He said, “Remember, garbage in, garbage out.”
He was right, you know. And this principle doesn’t just apply to a television set. People are the same way. What we take in really matters and has a lot to do with what comes out of us. If we fill our minds non-stop with a bunch of garbage every day, we should not be surprised when that garbage manifests itself in our thoughts and our speech. In both Matthew 12:34 and Luke 6:45, Jesus tells us, “…out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.”
That’s why it’s so important to spend time in the word every day; to fill our thoughts with something good and pure and holy. Listening to our pastors preach every Sunday, communing with like-minded Christians, and attending a Bible study class, all help to produce a kind of heart-abundance that will flow out of us in God-pleasing ways.
How do you keep the abundance of your heart in line with Christ? Share your thoughts with me at Lifting Her Voice, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. And, oh by the way…we tested our TV with a CD last night. The problem appears to be a Fire Stick that needs replacing. We won’t be getting that new TV just yet.