Filtering Life

Tuesday, February 22, 2022
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Psalm 136:1 – Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. (NLT)

I met him on an informational walk on the Foothills Trail. He had thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail, all 2190+ miles of it from Maine to Georgia, USA, within a twelve-month period.

Meeting and talking with a thru-hiker was exciting. As he talked about his adventure, he related the only time when he had to leave the trail. He had come upon a trail shelter where trail angels had left fresh fruit in a nearby stream. Without thinking, he had lunged into an apple without washing it off in filtered water. He soon found himself suffering from giardiasis (or beaver fever), a diarrheal disease caused by the microscopic parasite Giardia in the water. He was sidelined from the trail for a few days of misery.

I've never drunk water from creeks, lakes, or streams without filtering it first. Spending the money required for a dependable filtering source is worth the effort; so, too, is making sure that the filter is replaced or cleaned regularly.

Filtering life's experiences isn't quite as easy as filtering water. With water, all that I must do is to place the filter in the water source and then pump. What comes into my drinking canister is at least 99% pure. The chances that I'll be infected are slim. Not so with filtering life. Life's experiences vary in intensity and probability, and advice on how to face them is plentiful. In today's psalm, the writer ended everything that he stated about God with the refrain, "His faithful love endures forever." This is my dependable filtering system. Whatever comes my way, I can rest assured that God's faithful love for me endures forever.

God's love isn't filtered through our behaviour. If it were, most wouldn't experience it regularly. His love is filtered through His nature — which is love. While His nature also encompasses holiness — which can involve His divine wrath — His nature is to love His creations, both good and bad.

God's Word is the only reliable filtering source. Other sources may or may not allow in bacteria that could taint how I respond to a particular life experience. As the psalmist used God's revealed Word throughout his life's journey to filter his experiences, so we, too, can find there a source of instruction and encouragement to help us to filter life. When filtered through God's Word, unpleasant life experiences will lose the potential to infect us with bitterness, anger, confusion, unbelief, and doubt.

Let's change our perspective on life experiences by filtering them through God's Word.

Prayer: Father, when difficulties come our way, lead us to filter them through the teachings of Your Word. Amen.

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About the author:

Martin Wiles <mandmwiles@gmail.com>
Greenwood, South Carolina, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Amen Martin.


    An imperative reminder Martin, blessings.


    Hi Martin.
    Thank you for your filter analogy. God bless!


    Thanks Martin. Your devotionals are always so inspiring. Blessings.


    It works!
    Thanks for challenging us once again as we walk in “The Way”!
    (BC Canada)


    Thank you, Martin, I always enjoy your devotions. Today you lead me to think filtering news, truth, and misinformation, all best done through the Word of course.
    (ON)


    Greetings Martin,
    Very good words and great analogy you have expressed in today’s devotional. Yes, with the Lord and His words as our “filter”, we can have a very good and clean life. Blessings for your special writings.


    Good morning, Martin,
    I have never thought about filtering water. That tells you what a sheltered life I have lived. I have only camped at campgrounds which provide clean water or when hiking I have carried my water.
    Thanks for helping to educate me on water and on filtering life’s circumstances through God’s word. A great message. May we all continue to learn because you are willing to share your experiences. Blessings.


    A very good afternoon to you, Martin. As I began reading this devotional, I’m “hearing” Martin Wiles, and I’m almost right. As always, you sure give us something to get our minds charged with something we hadn’t really thought about before, or for a long time. So, a new challenge for a new day. Thank you so much as I find great new JOY at 97 that gives me courage to learn and share. I know for sure the Lord lets me continue on living and learning as there is a reason in His plan for me to share with someone who is in need. I hear far too many who are much younger than me, who have given up and say there is nothing they can do any more. My daughter uses me as an example as one who won’t give up until the Lord lets me know I have to move on at His plan.
    Thank you, Lord, for using Martin for blessing so many who are encouraged. Keep it up, as even a PK and PW need it. God bless you and yours.


    Thank you, Martin for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. The Blue Ridge mountains are among my favorite places! While I’m not much of a hiker, the Blue Ridge parkway thrilled me as a child. Blessings.

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