Does my car really smell like a dead animal?

The last two weeks of driving my sedan I have sniffed the air and wondered why it smelled funny. One day, I looked over the rubber mats and wondered whether the milk I spilled earlier had affected my interior.

Last week as I kept riding, the odor intensified and I thought perhaps the air reeked of a dead animal. Although this puzzled me, I went happily about my business buzzing around town.

Until Saturday, that is.

When Hewitt was commissioned to get a new bulb for my low beam headlight and stuck his head inside the vehicle for the driver’s manual, he hightailed it inside our house to announce:

“Your car stinks!”

“Really, I wondered it that was all in my head…”

I ignored him while he took my car interior apart. But soon, he re-entered the house with an announcement: “You have been driving around with a package of rotten chicken thighs in your trunk.”

“Oh? So that’s where my missing thighs went…”

Unfortunately, I am known for procrastinating. And it bites me.

Self-examination is hard. And because it is hard, I find it easy to procrastinate on dealing with issues in my soul.

Did you know that Holy Spirit is a bit like my husband? He searches the depths of us, scans under the seats and between the cracks and even jumps into our messy trunks if we let him. Although it can feel unsettling to have our messy places searched, Holy Spirit doesn’t show disgust or express blame but gently us asks whether we are willing to dump any rotten meat.

Our rotten meat is often unforgiveness. That person we don’t bless and whose name we utter with a harsh edge while our bodies tense. That unfair situation that keeps on happening and I cannot for the life of me stop it, nor bear it. Although we ignore the stink resentment causes us, what if others notice? What would it be like to open up to both human and divine input about the state of our soul? The choice is ours. We can keep driving until the infested air inside us suffocates us. Or we can ‘yes’ to God’s gracious intervention. Which one do you choose?

I absolutely love this fill-in-the-blank prayer and therefore I am offering it to you:

___________________(name of person), what I needed from you was _____________________( kindness, understanding, help etc.)

Instead you hurt me by ________________________( act, word).

But today I am giving you a gift.

I chose to forgive you for ___________________________________________________________

I also release you from my judgment, bitterness and anger.

Jesus, will you cleanse me and free me from this burden I’ve held on to?

As I release _________________, what do you want me to know?

(Listen for truth and write it down.)

(To purchase Hidden Wings where LaRae learns about forgiveness or to join my “Women of Identity newsletter, please go to the Books page.)

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