We had our carpets cleaned today, it was long overdue. Having lived in this house for 2 years now we have had our share of spills, pet stains, dirt being tracked through the house, etc. Our carpet had started out a light beige color, however, after three kids, and random pets running through the house made that beautiful beige carpet morph into a dingy darker brown colored carpet.
The potential for the carpet was not the brown. That was what happened when we didn't maintain it as we should have. When we allowed the carpet to be dirtied up and didn't fight against the small stains as they came about. Soon, after a few years the whole carpet looked dirty and was a whole other carpet. So today when we had the cleaners come and clean the carpet the put the carpet back to its clean and cleared up potential. Our carpet is once again a beige and clean beauty. However, it was a lot more work and a lot more money than it had been if we had decided to spot by spot and spill by spill clean it, or if we had regularly been cleaning it with a smaller carpet cleaner.
We are the same way all things are like that- the second law of thermodynamics says that if left to themselves all things deteriorate rather than develop. This is true of our health, our homes, our relationships, our sinful nature. If we don't take care of the things in our lives they destroy. This is what frustrates me about Christians when they say about sin "it's ok- I am forgiven by grace" or "God knows I am human, it was a small sin so I don't have to correct it" or some other such nonsense. When left to its own devices our sinful nature will take control. Slowly- like the spots in my carpet. If we are careful to take care of the little spots in our lives, like the little messes in our homes, we can keep our spiritual carpets clean. If we don't then they will take over our lives.