Take a look at the two pictures below for a moment:
Earlier this year, Sally Davies decided she wanted to see how a McDonald’s Happy Meal would hold up over time. She left the burger and fires out on her kitchen counter and took several pictures. Unless you read the captions in the pictures, you probably never would have guessed that they were taken 180 days apart. That’s a 6-month time span! With VERY few differences. After six months, the only major change she noticed was the food becoming rock hard. Magazines and TV shows like “Good Morning America” have been raving about this project. Even though this was not a “scientific project,” one has to wonder what kinds of preservatives are put into our food which enables it to last so long.
Certainly there are hundreds of applications which could be drawn from this story. However, the goal of this article is not to say whether people should or should not eat McDonald’s. The goal is always to draw spiritual parallels and conclusions.
The results of this experiment were shocking and, well, flat-out gross. We know that very little in our world is supposed to hang around like that. God specifically designed food and most materials to decompose over time. He even designed our bodies to get old and die (2 Corinthians 4:16-5:5). However, God did create something in us He wishes to preserve for all time; our souls. Matthew 16:26 shows the soul is more important and precious than anything this world has to offer; even the entire world itself. If there is anything on this earth God wants to preserve, it is your soul and mine.
In order to preserve our souls, God has even gone so far as to tell us what “spiritual preservatives” to have in our lives. Let’s focus on just one; God’s Word. James 1:21 says, “Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls.” When God’s word is received and implanted in our lives, it will save and preserve the soul. Vs. 22 goes on to explain this further by saying, “But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.” Not only should we receive the Word, but we must also be doers of the Word. No soul can be saved without obedience to God’s Word. We must make sure God’s Word is intertwined in our lives so intimately that it is who we are and what we do. This is what it means to have the “word implanted.” One cannot be saved without receiving and doing God’s Word. Clearly God’s Word is a vital “spiritual preservative.”
While people try to preserve food, beauty, youth, and a plethora of other aspects, none of these can be preserved for long. God made the soul something which can be preserved by obeying His Word. Let’s continue to keep the spiritual preservatives in our lives which save and preserve our souls.