God is asking many of us to change the filters through which we interpret the issues of life. Some of these filters are so clogged nothing new is able to pass through. We are choking to death for the lack of a fresh breath of revelation.
I’m usually on it when it comes to things like changing the air filter in our forced air heating/cooling unit, but this month, I missed it. One morning, I noticed the house was cooler than normal even though I had the thermostat programmed for a comfortable setting. I walked over to the thermostat and sure enough, the room temperature was 5 degrees cooler than the setting I had chosen. Then it dawned on me maybe the air filter needs changing. I opened the vent cover and to be honest, I had never seen such a clogged filter –ever! My heating unit was literally being choked to death and the result was the unit had no fresh air to heat and circulate. When I replaced the old filter with a new one, the Lord began to speak to me.
Each of us has filters in place. We filter news about the world and interpret our understanding of reality through the opinion of our favorite news channel or political affiliation. We filter our understanding of Scripture through our preferred strain of theology presented by our favorite teachers. We filter our interaction with people, good or bad, through the conditioning given to us in the family unit in which we were raised.
Some of these filters can actually choke off the flow of God’s Spirit in our lives. Over time, these filters get clogged with the debris of human opinion and unresolved personal brokenness. We begin to breathe the unfiltered air of what we think is the only way to see and live this life. Our unfiltered opinions begin to find equally clogged people who will join us in breathing the same stale air of party politics, narrow bands of fellowship and a worldview that is void of the fresh air of another opinion.
The Spirit wants to breathe new life into the Church. In order for this to take place, we need to replace our filters. The only safe filter is the person of Jesus Christ. His life filtered the fears of the disciples, the judgment of the Pharisees and the control of Rome and offered to the surrounding culture the fresh and unpolluted air of Heaven. This is the mission of the Church. We are actually in the spiritual air quality business. We have been called to bring the fresh breath of Heaven to Earth, not the stale substitutes that are long overdue for replacement.