Have you ever wondered how potholes get so deep and dangerous? Have you ever wondered how they even come about? Well, I did for many years until I watched the life cycle of a particular pothole from infancy to adulthood; which can be likened to the condition of our hearts.
As I drove passed my major route one day, I noticed a tiny crack on the road and it was so insignificant. The next day I drove by, the crack had now formed a little hole or ditch. I then started paying attention to monitor its future outcome. Within that week, rain fell and so as I drove to church on Sunday that week, it had now seriously increased and officially formed a pothole; yet it was still manoeuvrable. Since nothing was done to it, it kept getting worse and worse until it got so bad, that side of the road was no longer pliable. It all started from a little crack to a death trap and that was when the Holy Spirit ministered to me.
In Matthew 12:43-45, Jesus spoke about the condition of a man’s heart or life being a major catalyst for spiritual manipulation. It says:
“When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none. Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.”
It’s really self explanatory enough when compared with the pothole life cycle. Whenever you see that the devil is taking control over your life, simply check the condition of your heart. You will notice that it is either totally spiritually empty or quarter to emptiness. It is empty, swept and garnished.
What Causes Potholes in Our Lives?
As Jesus said in the passage above, when our lives are “empty, swept and garnished”, the unclean spirit comes with his family of seven even deadlier than himself to become bona fide citizens of our lives. Potholes always start from little cracks, which get worse and worse when not attended to. Galatians 5:19-21 gives us a break down of these cracks that could lead to and become potential potholes in our lives:
“Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”
All these things are cracks of different magnitudes, some of which are potholes in themselves. We are all familiar with the phrase “One thing led to another”, that is the phrase that people use when trying to explain how they landed in bed with each other. The crack for the pothole of fornication is lasciviousness (lust). When there is strife, hatred usually follows, and then seditions and then wrath, and possibly other cracks and potholes. So you see, they all work hand in hand and can equally work alone.
Filling Up Those Potholes
After a month or two, the pothole was filled up with cement, as is the normal ingredient for building roads and covering potholes in Nigeria today, because the intention is not to solve the problem but to create it again and again in other to eat again and again. Although the road is now pliable, the question is, for how long? Applying this to our lives, I’m afraid we have to adopt the dubious routine of the Nigerian government as filling up spiritual potholes is not a onetime event. Romans 12:2 says,
“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
The word ‘renewing’ is continuous in nature, it is a present participle meaning that it is not a onetime event. We need to keep renewing our minds with the things of God. Joshua 1:8 says,
“This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”
One of the reasons why marriages and relationships fail or become uninteresting is because the initial fire is not rekindled, there is no constant refuelling of the initial love that was used to start the marriage or relationship. I’ve heard some ladies who have just been dumped or left unattended to, lamenting for the guy to remember all the things he did and said to woo her, “You’re the sugar in my tea, you’re the cockroach in my cupboard, you’re the bee in my honeycomb, you’re the tissue paper in my toilet…etc…” That’s what happens when a relationship is not renewed afresh on a continuous basis. You can’t use today’s fuel to drive a journey of days, talk less of years; you need to keep refuelling to drive to wherever you wish.
Standard Materials to Fill Up Potholes
Although we would adopt Nigeria’s mechanism, we would not adopt their inferior materials for our lives. Although Romans 12:2 and Joshua 1:8 above already tell us where to buy our materials from, Philippians 4:8 does the bend-down-select for us and picks the perfect mixture to the smooth daily renewing of our minds, it says:
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
Galatians 5:22-23 finally gives us the specific materials that we need to achieve the perfect mixture above by giving us the “Fruit of the Spirit” which is,
“love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”
In the sections above, we have talked about how to overcome potholes, but the Bible also gives us a simple advice which practically encompasses and unifies everything we have discussed above in other to simply avoid potholes in the first place. Romans 13:14 advises us thus:
“But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.”
That’s it, end of discussion!
The Highway to Heaven
Check for any cracks in your life before they become potholes and check for any potholes before they take your life. I speak to myself and to everyone at large, let us check ourselves today and fill up those openings using the standard materials prescribed above. Better still, let us try to be proactive and simply avoid these potholes by making no provision for our flesh to fulfil our lustful desires. When the devil then sees that we are no longer going to the market and brings the market to us, let us put on the whole armour of God, operating under the grace and mercy of God to resist him (Ephesians 6:11). Also, remember that falling is not the end of the world, which is why Christ died for us, His grace is sufficient for us. Get back on your feet and fight.
May God help us as we daily rise up and set out for victory; and may He save us Nigerians from those death traps of potholes on our roads, especially in this festive period in Jesus’ name. May God touch the hearts of those in power to take care of our bad roads and in doing so forget to use inferior materials, but rather superior and standard materials for the betterment of our roads and the safety of the citizenry in Jesus’ name, amen!
Cheers and God bless you infinitely!!!