1 ¶ Dead flies putrefy the perfumer’s ointment, And cause it to give off a foul odor;
So does a little folly to one respected for wisdom and honor. Ecclesiastes 10:1 (NKJV)
By Bro. John L. Cash
After 32 years of country life, moving to town has given us quite a few improvements. We now have a good cell phone signal, high-speed internet, and Netflix. On the other hand, there have been a few bad changes. Most notably, the trash can in our kitchen stinks.
Living five miles out of town got us really spoiled when it came to getting rid of garbage. Because we were surrounded by forest, all we had to do was to walk to the edge of the woods and throw the offending victuals over the fence. We knew we weren’t polluting or hurting the environment because the edible food was consumed by possums, raccoons, armadillos, and also by various dogs and cats. Whatever didn’t get eaten turned to compost, which made the flowers and trees grow. Everybody came out a winner.
Another perk of country life was the huge metal dumpster our son Seth built for us there. He welded it together when he was in mechanics class in high school. It was so big that the trash from the parsonage and the church next door never filled it up. Whenever something stinky wound up in the trash, we’d just take out that bag right away.
Things are different in the city. These days we can’t throw our trash over the back fence because there are neighbors there instead of a forest. And because we have municipal trash pick-up, we have only one trash bin issued to us by the city. It fills up much more quickly than our dumpster in the country did.
So, one day last week when the kitchen was extra smelly, Susan sent me to buy a Diaper Genie. Many homes with infants are using these to deal with stinky diapers. But we’re using it for diapers, litter box poo, empty cat food cans, and rotten banana peels. Every night before I go to bed, I seal up the diaper genie bag for the day and put it in the kitchen garbage pail. The odors stay trapped inside the seven layers of vinyl. Susan says it’s a huge improvement.
Did you know the Bible has several passages that relate to odors? In today’s Bible lesson (at the top), King Solomon said that tiny flies in a fragrant ointment will cause the precious balm to be ruined. It’s a lesson for us all.
We’re prone to think that “little” sins we commit don’t make any difference. But sin always leaves us worse off than we were before.
Let’s strive this week to repent of our sins and forsake them, drawing near to the Lord for grace. It’s the only way of life that doesn’t stink.
Dr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad.” He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and has spent the last 32 years being a country preacher in the piney woods five miles south of the little town of Hickory, Mississippi. He recently retired after 28 years as a Mississippi public schoolteacher, and is now a stay-at-home-grandpa with his new grandson, Landon Cash. He and his lovely wife, Susan, have just moved into a pretty brick house in town (where the Preacher still doesn’t have a sense of smell, but trusts his wife’s sniffer.) Their kids include Spencer (age 26), his wife Madeline (age 26), and Seth (age 23), and his wife Leanne (age 22). You can send him a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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