"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things." Philippians 4:6-8
It has been almost two months since I had skin cancer removed from my face, close to my left ear. I shared in an earlier post that things seemed to be healing nicely until the internal stitches started poking their way through my skin, because my body was rejecting them. Since then, the remaining thread has dissolved, and I am back to the 'scar care' information that I was given when I was discharged from the plastic surgeon's practice.
In order to not have a scar from surgery, it was suggested to rub cocoa butter on the incision, and massage the area multiple times throughout the day....for the next year and a half. Now that requires some serious commitment. I can choose to follow the instructions of the surgeon, or I could choose to wear a hairstyle that covers up my imperfection, or I could choose to follow something in between. I could allow this 'care' to consume my thoughts and attention. But I intend to do what I can to keep up with the suggested care, but not beat myself up for the times that I forget. After all, it is only a scar, and we are told not to be obsessed with our beauty. 1 Peter 3:3-4 says, "Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight." I desire to be a woman who has a gentle and quiet spirit. I want it to be something that others notice about me - not because of me, but because of the Lord shining through me.
All these thoughts have been playing through my mind today as I continue to plan and prepare for my upcoming spiritual retreat. Just like my face was unable to fully heal until the internal stitches dissolved, so too we need to address sin that is in our hearts before we can move forward. God desires for us to have a clean heart and a clean mind in order for Him to fully work in our lives. When we have uprooted weeds that have sprouted in our hearts, we then are able to walk like Micah 6:8 encourages us. "He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God."
Do you have any pruning or uprooting that needs to be done in your heart?