It was the constant head scratching that made my heart sink. Since we were at the doctor's office, I asked her to check and sure enough, my son, Spike, had lice. He was thrilled because it meant no school for a day or two, and needless to say, I was not.
We've had lice once before and it's a nightmare. First of all, as soon as the doctor confirmed it, my own head began to itch. We went straight to CVS and bought some Rid for both of us.
We shampooed, deloused, used a fine-toothed comb, nitpicked for three straight days and then did a couple of olive oil treatments. The head checking lasted for two weeks afterward....and as I type this post, my head's feeling itchy just remembering!
I must've done twenty loads of laundry - washing and sanitizing constantly in order to rid my house of the bloodsuckers. When a friend called to say her child had a case for the first time, I gave her the rundown and wished her luck because it's a super tedious process.
Lice are resilient. They can move quickly on the scalp and lay eggs that cling to the shaft of the hair; they can also breathe underwater. In order to remove them, you have to go through each section of hair and push the egg sacks off with the edge of your fingernails. This process can take up to three hours at a time, but it's worth it because there's nothing more disgusting than watching adult lice crawl around on your child's scalp. Once they're gone, you remain on high-alert, watching for any signs of itching and scratching for quite a while.
After all my energetic treatments, it later occurred to me: Why aren't I as vigilant when attacking the sin in my life? Sin certainly sucks the lifeblood out of me and separates me from God. Look what Jesus says about it:
He went on: "What comes out of a man is what makes him 'unclean'. For from within, out of men's hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and make a man 'unclean.'" Mark 7:20-23
I was thinking about it because of the product we used...yes, a lice shampoo reminded me of scripture!
Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Eph 4:31
But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Col 3:8
Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. 1 Peter 2:1
Notice that the command is to "rid yourselves" - no one else can do it for us. We need to vigilantly check, re-check and remove every form of evil from our hearts.
I, for one, have lots of work to do in this area, because I've found a few bugs of jealousy, arrogance, and malice (ill-will, viciousness) in my heart.
As we work to eradicate it, we replace it with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. (Col 3:12)
As we ring in 2012 tonight, let's make a promise to leave the old sin behind. Goodbye and good riddance to sin in 2012. Happy New Year everyone!!!