Thinking back on the manner in which life has been unfolding, it has occurred to me on several occasions that there have been instances where there were some toxic areas developing in my life. This may seem very obtuse when you begin to think about it yourself, but in reality, there are some habits, people, behaviors, and reactions that we all have that can become toxic. The word toxic, according to the dictionary, means: 1- containing or being poisonous material especially when capable of causing death or serious debilitation; 2 – exhibiting symptoms of infection or toxicosis; 3 – extremely harsh, malicious, or harmful; 4 – relating to or being an asset that has lost so much value that it cannot be sold on the market. What areas may be debilitating, infectious, harsh, harmful, or causing you to lose value?
There are so many levels to our lives that, often times, it is difficult to realize when toxic things are taking root. Think about it, by the time black mold begins to spread in an area, the issue has been there for a while. My grandmother use to say that if you start smelling yourself, you have been stinking for much longer. The short of it is this, you can become some used to an environment, smell, function, and order of something that you no longer notice a problem! We have become so familiar with dysfunction, that we will order and manage our lives around the dysfunction instead of putting that dysfunctional thing in it’s place!
A while ago, about two years specifically, there was a water crisis in Rio de Janeiro where the water was toxic. A place that held so much beauty was now toxic is some areas. I remember talking with my husband about it and he said its funny how a place can be so beautiful in many areas but have toxic water! This statement can be related to how society portrays a lot of things these days. Well, that is how a lot of us live our lives. People will only present the best parts of themselves, only to be miserable on the inside. Will post half naked pictures of themselves, get a ton of likes and comments, but still feel alone and unloved. This is not God’s plan for any of us!
We are so well put together and articulate in many ways. Our hair is laid & fixed perfectly, makeup done & flawless, and haircut fresh…cars, houses, etc…we put so much effort into appearing beautiful that we don’t work on the inside and the “water” we produce is toxic! The things that we give to others is tainted and full of the uncertainty, insecurities, and pain that we carry ourselves. There are some people that have given you advice or opinions from a hurt, broken and toxic place. Life will have us all in a place where unforgiveness, pain, and stress will control the narrative that we display.
So the challenge becomes, how do we tear away the toxicity of life’s experiences? How do we remove the stain of heartbreak & betrayal? How do we recognize the impact of toxic shock? There is a root that grows deep from the effects of brokenness that can eventually be passed down to our children. The inappropriate way we respond to things, running away from situations when they get tough, and avoiding tactics are all things that will manifest themselves in our children. These are all survival techniques that we learn in order to cope and self medicate. But they are ineffective and can do more damage in the end.
My prayer today is that we do a self assessment and begin to identify what is causing us distress, harm, anxiety, etc…and begin to pray daily to God specifically about these things. We can no longer be vague about these things, we have to call them out! Assess, identify, and remove! We are in a season of making room and God wants to make room for better days and better things! The bible says that out of your belly will flow rivers of living water! It’s time for us to decontaminate our water! All of the dark, hidden places must be washed clean! Let us get to a place where we no longer look to the things of the world to quench our thirst but we drink from the well of life.
Scripture: John 4: 13-15
Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again,14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” 15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”
Be blessed y’all!