Pleasures Removed

Last week, I arranged to have replaced the glass in my parlour window. Although technically doubled-glazed, the panes were thin and the gaps between the wooden sashes required a helping of cotton wool to keep out the drafts. After 12 years, I had saved up to have them replaced with thicker glass and better insulated surrounds.

During the operation, there was an hour or so in which the old glass was removed before the new went in. It seemed strange peering out onto my modest frontal garden without an intervening glaze. Although my old windows leaked heat and admitted draft, there had to be a period of no glass at all before the better replacements could be installed. To fix minor drafts I had to have major drafts; to improve my glazing, I had to have no glazing.

Often, people become Christians during particularly difficult times in their life. They know they want and need something better, but in order to get it, providence strikes them down. Perhaps this is why so many former druggies, criminals and depressives are converted; having had what good they possessed removed, they cry out the more for something better. Those with comfortable, contented lives see little need for change; indeed, they would hardly welcome the disruption. Before we receive new life in Christ, we must repent of the former life without Him. Before we experience joy inexpressible, we must smash and dispose of the worldly pleasures which occupied our frames before.

 I said in my heart, “Come now, I will test you with mirth; therefore enjoy pleasure”; but surely, this also was vanity. I said of laughter—“Madness!”; and of mirth, “What does it accomplish?” Ecclesiastes 2:1-3, New King James Version