Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wash Me Clean, Lord!

I heard two men talking the other day, one a native angeleno and the another was a guy who had just moved here from another state. The angeleno asked the new guy, "How do you like L.A?" The newbie answered, "it's okay but it's a bit dirty". The angeleno quipped jokingly, "Do you mean the city or the people?" The new guy paused thoughtfully for a moment then he answered quite seriously, "both?". The angeleno nodded quietly and the men continued on to converse about other things.

I was a few feet from the men and not intentionally ease dropping on their conversation but the newbie's observations about the city and its people hit me like a ton of bricks. In fact, I was motionless for a few minutes as it sunk in. The newbie had hit the nail right on the head... L.A. is D-I-R-T-Y! Every time I had been traveling around L.A., I had been seeing things that I have never seen or heard before anywhere else... terrible, slimy, dirty things... and I had been extremely bothered by them. And it just wasn't the soiled looking seats on the buses, or the woeful looking homeless population or even the incredible stench of urine in some places I've visited because you have that in other cities as well. It's the people, they're D-I-R-T-Y too! In the 2 years since I've been here, I have met my share of low-minded and base people and I have felt that their dirty mentality was somehow contagious. So much so that I always felt like I needed to scrub my mind clean as well as my body as a form of decontamination after an encounter or outing. It's easy to take a hot shower and scrub your skin raw to erase physical contact with dirty things but how does one clean ones mind and spirit from hateful words and perverted images?

I had been praying about this very thing for the past month since my baptism then last Sunday, my church has us read Psalm 51 as our Bible scripture for the week.

Psalm 51:

2 Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin...
7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow...
10 Create in me a clean heart: O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from thy presence: and take not thy holy spirit from me.

For those like myself who didn't know, hyssop is a shrub-like bush used by Old Testament Jews for purification and it is noted to have a strong detergent-like quality. The pastors will be washing our hands with hyssop this week to help strengthen our determination to live clean and spirit-filled lives and after a full day of L.A.'s grime and filth, I really need it.

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