Have you ever noticed how easily we slip and slide into sin? One day we tell a little lie and the next day it is easier to tell another lie and then before we know it, we even start to believe our own lies. One day we watch a movie that is filled with profanity and we are shocked. After five more movies with more profanities, we don’t even hear them. I once said to my sister-in-law, “I think a certain movie would be just fine for my niece to watch.” We then started talking about the movie and I realized that, “no, that movie would not be good for my young niece.” I had become immune to the profanities and sex. Has this ever happened to you? Maybe not. Maybe you are reading this and thinking to yourself, “goodness gracious, she must lie a lot and watch a lot of dirty movies.”
No, that is not the case—but I am amazed at the things in life that used to horrify me and now I am immune to them.
Our Tuesday night Young Adult group just finished a study, Soul Detox – Clean Living in a Contaminated World by Craig Groeschel. Craig takes the time to share personal experiences and scripture about all sorts of issues in our lives today—poisons, if you will—that are slowly killing us...maybe not physically, but certainly killing us spiritually.
Craig divides the book into three broad categories:
1. Toxic behaviors
2. Toxic emotions
3. Toxic influences
As our group studied various chapters, we were all surprised—from the youngest in the group, who is 22 years old, to my husband and me, who are much older than 22—at the things in our lives and in our society that are toxic to our souls.
As an example, read this paragraph from page 46 of the book:
Think about your thoughts. Be brutally honest. Do you battle with negative thoughts about yourself, other people or life in general? Are you often consumed with fearful, worrisome thoughts, putting your faith in bad things happening rather than good? Do you find yourself discontented; always wishing life was different or better? Are you critical, finding something wrong with others? If you answered yes to one or more of the previous questions, your life is being infected by toxic thoughts.
How many times a week—actually, how many times a day do you find yourself thinking any of those thoughts? Another chapter is on materialism. Our culture oozes with toxic materialism. We think that more money and better things are what we need.
Craig spells out things in a way that is easily understood. He uses many personal examples that are humorous but profound. Our group thought the DVDs were a little goofy but once again, they worked well. The videos opened the door to lively discussion in the group. Our group used the DVDs for the five sessions that are included, but we all loved the study so much that we pulled two more chapters and studied those without a DVD.
Soul Detox is an excellent study for groups of all ages. I can see how this study would be applicable to anyone from ages 18-98. As Christians, we are all called to Clean Living in a Contaminated World and sometimes it takes a brave person like Craig Groeschel to make us realize that there are things in our lives that need some serious cleaning.
Membership and Evangelism
Trinity UMC, Homewood