My heart is a jukebox of sin.
Most days I stay busy enough, distracted enough, to not hear the music playing.
But, when I slow down… I find the volume goes up.
You know when – and where – I hear it the loudest?As I’m standing at the sink full of dirty dishes.
But this is not a dance floor I find myself on, it’s a battleground.
Now, maybe for you it’s during the long commute home, or while you stand in the shower, or when you can’t drift off to sleep. But for me, when I am stuck at that sink, washing dish after dish… the music begins.Now, I suffer from two tracts, set to repeat.
The first is prides’ song. Cue: “You’re simply the best.. dun, dun, dun.. better than allll the rest”. This is where my mind wanders to all the wonderful things I have said or done for others that day. Really, I’d pat myself on the back if it wasn’t so sudsy from the dishes. It’s here that I also start to envision myself as a really mama ‘martyr’ for how selflessly I give.give.give all the day long. And as I lift another dish from the tepid waters, and feel the weariness of my limbs... I start to drone: “Nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen…”Suddenly this jukebox heart shifts. I skip a beat. Just enough of an interruption to gain clarity and perspective on how inward and prideful my thoughts are vortexing.
Cue the second main tract: “Shut up, just shut up, shut up. Shut up, just shut up, shut up”!
(No, really. If you were standing in the kitchen you can hear me say it out loud even).
Because so often lately, and more quickly, lately… I am so over hearing about ME. So done, with stroking this viper of pride in my heart and thinking it’s a pet. ‘Be killing sin, or it will be killing you’ it’s said. So I get out a mallet, and smash the jukebox with an angry “Awwww shaddup!”.Go figure, it doesn’t help for long.
Turns out that just trying to will myself to not think about something doesn’t work.
I can’t just not think about something I’m trying to not think about… because it leaves a vacuum.
I need a new song.
What is otherwise called – the ‘expulsive power of a new affection’.For me, this is the moment I start to sing hymns. Songs of praise and worship to the One who saved me from myself, from my sins. The more I love Jesus, the better this jukebox plays a song worth singing.
Some days (some moments) the old tunes still taunt.
But, as Odysseus tied himself to the mast, to avoid turning his ship to the enticing destruction of the siren’s songs… I tie myself to the cross. I cling to the cross of Christ. Despite the siren song of pride in my own chest, that would rather exult myself than another, I cling to the cross… and sing:
"O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above"
-Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing-