Get the Garbage Out - The Warrior's Journey®

Get the Garbage Out

Author: David Causey, USA (Ret.)

A Sailor collects trash on the beach.. Photo by The U.S. Navy is licensed under CC By 2.0

Ear Spring geyser in Yellowstone National Park did something it had not done for 80 years. It erupted. Normally the geyser just bubbles. But last month it exploded by hurling a flume of boiling water thirty feet into the air. A video camera captured the event. 

But Ear Spring didn’t just spew water. It appears that, since the 1930s, people have been using the hot spring as a garbage receptacle and a wishing well. When it erupted in September, it also regurgitated loads of tin and aluminum cans, coins, broken bottles, hats, a baby pacifier, a cement block, paper cups, and other assorted junk. Park officials prohibit throwing anything into the thermals, stating that such debris can damage them. Evidently, the garbage accumulates and can choke the narrow throat of the spring. Over time pressure builds beneath the blockage of trash and finally results in a violent eruption. 

You know, sometimes our lives can become cluttered with the garbage of sin. If we don’t expel it ourselves, God Himself will have to allow a violent disturbance in our lives to expel it. 

Even worse, sometimes we can allow ourselves to become the debris and garbage which offends God and obstructs His plans and purposes. In such cases, God may have to spew us forth from His purpose until we repent and return to Him. 

The eruption of Ear Spring reminded me of something in the Bible. Before God brought Israel into the Promised Land, He warned them against forsaking His law. God told them that if they forsook His law and practiced the same sins of the people before them than the land would “vomit them out.” He explained that the land would do so with its present inhabitants because of their perverse wickedness (Leviticus 18:25, 28; 20:22).  

This warning was fulfilled when the kingdoms of Israel and Judah were conquered by the Assyrians and Babylonians respectively. The peoples were exiled to Mesopotamia and beyond, to give the land rest from their bloodshed and lawlessness. 

In a similar way, Jesus told the church of Laodicea that because they were lukewarm – spiritually apathetic, He would spew them (literally “vomit” them) out of His mouth (Revelation 3:16). The reference is to the waters of the ancient city of Laodicea which had no natural water source of its own. Instead water had to be piped in from the hot springs of the nearby city of Hierapolis. By the time the waters reached Laodicea they were tepid and would make a person nauseous.  

Jesus told the church at Laodicea that they had lost all fervency in their devotion to Him. They had become affluent, materialistic, self-sufficient, and prideful. Their “lukewarm-ness” was making Jesus sick to His stomach. Amazingly, Jesus found Himself on the outside of this church, seeking reentrance (Revelation 3:20). Yet, even more amazingly, Jesus still considered them His church. 

God’s got a strong stomach. He loves the poor and destitute. Yet He also loves the wealthy who could easily relieve the burden of the poor. He loves the sinner. But He also loves the struggling saint who is vexed by the sinner’s sin. Therefore, when it comes to tolerating sin, even God has His limits. His love for us demands that He discipline us for our sins (1 Corinthians 11:31-23). His love for righteousness demands that He punish injustice and evil (Hebrews 1:9).  

In the Bible believers are called to be a living sacrifice that is well-pleasing to God (Romans 12:1; 2 Corinthians 2:15). They please their heavenly Father by offering themselves to Him as instruments of His peace, healing, and salvation to the broken world around them (Romans 14:18; Philippians 4:18; 1 Timothy 5:4; Hebrews 13:21). None of us should sicken God’s stomach with our arrogance, pride, perversion, and heartlessness. Let’s be a pleasing aroma to God through our charity and purity for His name’s sake. 


Dear Father in heaven, please help me keep my life free of the debris of sin, pride, and perversion. Neither allow me to become a nauseous odor in Your nostrils by losing my zeal and passion for You and my love for others. Please cleanse me, forgive me, and fill me with Your Holy Spirit. Amen.


Information from:;
J. Massyngberde Ford, Revelation, The Anchor Bible, Doubleday, Garden City, NY, 1975, pp. 418-19

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