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Maintenance Is Key

Now that summer is in full swing, and the temperatures are soaring, it is time to ensure our sprinkler systems are working correctly. Actually, if I'm honest, I should have done this back in late spring when it was cooler, but I forgot about it until the grass started to turn brown in spots.

So, last Saturday, I proceeded to fire up the sprinklers by turning on the valves and setting the timer to manual in hopes everything would operate perfectly. I waited, and I waited, until I finally could wait no more. I examined the sprinkler heads of the first zone, and they looked fine at first glance. So, why wouldn't they pop up and shower the grass, as they were programmed to do?

Puzzled and a bit frustrated, I inspected the sprinkler heads and eventually unscrewed them from the risers. Once the heads were unscrewed, water began spewing everywhere. As it turns out, the sprinkler heads needed maintenance to remove the dirt clogging the orifice that allows the water to emerge.

Recently, I was heading home from the Capitol in Atlanta, and traffic was ridiculously slow. I mean, we are all used to crawling north, as the time approaches 4:00pm, but when people are exiting their cars, you know it is going to be a long commute. After nearly two hours of barely moving, a Georgia State Patrol officer pulled up on the apron of the road, so I asked him what caused the delay. He responded that a Jeep ran out of gas and was subsequently hit by a semi-truck. Thankfully, there were no serious injuries, but if the Jeep owner had paid closer attention to the operational needs of the vehicle, the entire mess could have been avoided.

Unless it is disposable, nearly everything we own requires some level of maintenance to ensure consistency. Our health, cars, lawn mowers, air conditioning units, computers, and even our septic systems require periodic attention to prevent untimely disruptions or complete failure.

Relationships are no different, and without periodic attention and intentionality, they become stagnant, unproductive, and ultimately broken. Just as water is designed to spray out of the sprinkler, the outpouring of love and communication is designed to be evident in a healthy relationship. When those things become restricted and no longer freely flow, it is time to do a tune-up before ultimate failure occurs.

As believers, it is easy to put our spiritual lives on autopilot and forget how important regular evaluations and intentional maintenance are to avoiding stagnation. Through disciplined actions, our spiritual relationships can remain vibrant and free of the debris and clutter that prevent the Holy Spirit from being effective in our lives. 

“An escalator can never break; it can only become ...
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