I discovered a HUGE mistake that I innocently made.

Today I stepped into our chicken pen and noticed that the surface was dry, but my weight pushed the earth down as if the ground was mush.   “Hmmm, interesting” I thought.   Then suddenly all of the pieces began to fall together!  DING DING DING.  Did you see the little light bulb go off over my head?

Immediately the conversation with my Mother-in-law the night before came to my mind:

MIL: What is that smell?!?!?! (As we walked in the back yard.)
Me: Oh, that is where the chicken poo got wet.  It smells when the pen gets wet.
MIL:  Are you sure?

Then I started thinking about the number of times I have said that this past month.  Hmmmm.  Suddenly I ran to get a shovel!

Oh my!  No wonder there was a smell when it rained.  Do you know why?!?!?  Each time it rained, I poured pine shavings on top of the puddles of water standing in the chicken pen and scratching area.  I did it for several reasons:  1. If my chickens didn’t have muddy feet, I wouldn’t have to work as hard cleaning the eggs.  2.  The pine shavings smelled fresh and made everything look nice.

Wow, don’t we often do that with SIN?

Sin stinks!  There is nothing good about it!

Oh, let me assure you, even when the ugly stuff was covered with something that was supposed to make it smell nice and pretty — the ugly stuff still remained and even grew!   When I pushed my shovel through the crusty (beautiful) layer, it immediately slipped through the most putrid mushy concoction!   No longer were my feet on a firm foundation.

How many times do we try to hide our sin?  We bury it deep in our hearts — “thinking” it is hidden.  We place a big smile on our face and shout “hallelujah” as loud as the next person, but where there is sin – there is a problem.   No matter how pretty we might look on the outside, there is a stench!

Proverbs 28:13
He who covers his transgressions will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes his sins will obtain mercy.

Guess what I did for about 5 hours?  I shoveled the muck out of the chicken pen!  The smell was intense to say the least.  The pine shavings that I THOUGHT would absorb the water, actually formed a barrier so that the water couldn’t dry.  The ground was saturated underneath.  (You have smelled rotten water from a vase of flowers, right?  Well, multiply that times 100.  Gag!)  The chicken poo water had plenty of time to ferment/stagnate under that “pretty” covering of nice pine shavings.  Oh my!

Sin gives a foothold to satan in our lives.  The scriptures state that IF we resist him, he must flee from us.  Entertaining sin is NOT resisting him.   No perfume or pretty covering is going to make a difference.

James 4:7
So be subject to God. Resist the devil [stand firm against him], and he will flee from you.

Since the muck (just like sin) had to be dealt with, I put my back into it and worked hard.

We also play a part in dealing with the sin in our lives.  Jesus paid the price for our sins, but we need to be real with ourselves and the Lord.  Sometimes it is hard work.

Six years ago when I had the sin of unforgiveness acting as a stumbling block in my life,  I chose to go through a program called Cleansing Stream to work through my issues — just me and the Lord.   (It was just what I needed!)  We must give Him permission to place the tool of His Word deep into our hearts.  The Word can dig and loosen the fallow ground.  When the sin and mud is exposed, the Light of Christ can begin to bring healing.

Isaiah 55:11
So is My word that goes out from My mouth:
   It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
   and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

Trust me, I dug until I reached a firm foundation.  All of the rotten, stinky, soupy junk had to be removed from the pen.

Where sin is concerned, God’s Word can shine light and EXPOSE the stench!  Oh, how the Word of God in our hearts builds a firm foundation!

Finally the Calvary arrived!  A teenage friend, Jesse — who is like a son around here, pulled up for a drink of sweet tea.  Much to his chagrin, he became an unwilling participant in the project.  I would probably still be out there digging if it weren’t for Jesse.  He ran to the shelter to get one of our tractors with a big bucket on the front.  THAT saved a lot of time.  With two of us working, we were able to complete the mucking project.

Psalm 32:5
I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide. I said, I will confess my transgressions to the Lord [continually unfolding the past till all is told]–then You [instantly] forgave me the guilt and iniquity of my sin. Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]!

I don’t know about you, but I need people.  I need my heart-friends who will love me through my failures and cover me in prayer.   Just as Jesse showed up with more muscle than my female frame could muster, JESUS is there to bring us through to victory!  Jesse was stronger.  He multiplied my efforts.  In the natural, I was fine on my own, though it was a slow project.   But where sin is concerned — we need the One who is stronger!  We can’t be good enough.  We can’t be holy enough.   We need the blood of Jesus to cleanse us of our sins.

Psalm 34:18
The Lord is close to those who are of a broken heart and saves such as are crushed with sorrow for sin and are humbly and thoroughly penitent.

Do you have some hidden sin that needs to be uncovered and removed?   Don’t be deceived — it won’t just go away if left unattended.  It will grow and eventually become a stench to those around you.

It may be hard work emotionally.  You may look raw, exhausted, even faint (like the picture of me below) — but the journey is well worth it.   I was tired (to say the least) even though God gave me strength, but I was thankful I was able to do it.

You too can do it!

Have a blessed day everyone!

I am linking with a Rural Journal and Deborah Jean’s Dandelion House.  Please visit by clicking on their buttons below (and BTW — the coops smells WONDERFUL!):