I guess I’m sort of an Energizer driver. I mean on a trip, if I have to, I can just keep going, and going and going. Of course, I need some help staying alert every once in a while: music, air, food, especially food. I must confess, though, that carrots and celery are not my idea of an exciting snack to keep you going. Now, you know, when we’ve stopped for gas over the years, one mile from empty of course, I’ve gone into the little food store and picked up a pack of those donuts or cupcakes or fruit pies. Nourishing stuff – health food, you know. I’m speaking in the past tense now. I have joined the “think about what you’re putting into your body” movement that a lot of folks are in these days. Food manufacturers have to put this little label on their products now that tells you what’s in those tempting little snacks. Now I check that before I buy it. I cannot believe the fat grams, the calories, the sodium and the cholesterol. Hello artery clog, hello high blood pressure, hello cholesterol, triple bypass surgery. A lot of food companies have figured out that trend, and that’s why you see more and more products that are low-fat, no-fat, low-cholesterol, no taste. Actually, that contents list is a great thing for all of us. A lot of us aren’t making our food decisions based on just how good it tastes or our appetite. We care about what’s in the things that are about to be in us!
I’m Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about “Checking the Contents.”
It’s good to pay attention to the contents before you put something in your mouth, or in your mind. When God tells us what it means to make Jesus Lord of our thoughts, of our mind He puts it this way. It’s in our word for today from the Word of God in Philippians 4:8, “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.”
That’s God’s diet plan for your heart. And notice the deciding factor in whether you should watch or listen to or read something. It’s the content! Not if it’s funny, not if it’s clever, not if it’s entertaining, not if you like the tune, not if it’s something “everyone” is seeing or listening to or not if you like the style. I can’t afford to pick what I eat just based on whether I like the taste. I could have an early date with a heart specialist or an undertaker that way. No, I have to decide based on whether or not the contents of this taste treat are unhealthy.
That’s how your Savior wants you to decide what you read or watch or listen to. Look at the contents. Think about some of your favorite TV programs, your favorite music, websites, magazines, books you read, movies you go to, the humor you listen to. Does it pass God’s test for what gets into your heart? Is it something to be admired? Is it pure? Is it something Jesus would feel comfortable with? Is it something He would laugh at, that He would recommend? Does it portray God’s ways or sinful ways? Is it clean or is it suggestive? Is it positive or negative?
God cares about what you’re “eating” mentally. He makes it very clear. And He says this in Proverbs 4:23, “Above all else, guard your heart because it is the wellspring of life.” If an animal happens to fall in a well and dies, it will pollute the drinks that come out of that well. It’s the same with your mind. If you allow something polluted or dead in there, it will continue to contaminate the well for a long time. That’s why we have such a hard time forgetting a dirty joke or a movie scene for so long. Sin-stained stuff makes a deeper impression than we could ever imagine. So long after the song is off the charts or the show is over, the pollution planted by them will live in your heart and continue to poison your thoughts and your desires.
God has called us to become new people by, He says, the “renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:1). It’s hard to make your sin-polluted mind new and clean when you keep pumping in more garbage. If you want to be all you were meant to be in Christ, then pay attention to what you’re putting in your mind. The package may be very attractive, the taste may be exciting, but the contents may be deadly. And for a disciple of Jesus, the contents settle whether it’s going in you or not.