What Lies Beneath

Danny wrote a reflection on this mold crisis from his perspective…

what-lies-beneathI never knew it was there… for three years it silently worked its way into my body, and the body of my wife, and precious Benjamin, and his four siblings. Constant fatigue, bleeding noses, kids always coughing – and sweet little Benjamin, as soon as he started talking, began communicating how much his legs were aching all the time.

We couldn’t figure it out, and our doctors just kept pumping us with more antibiotics and telling us “this is normal for large active families…”

If I only had known that under the carpet of the place my son had been sleeping since his birth was a toxin that was invading his little body and sucking the life out of him. If only I had could have seen the invisible spores in the air my whole family was breathing… Maybe I would have done everything in my power to protect my family from this black mold from hell… this plague that has made our family homeless for the last two weeks, and forced us to have to throw out nearly everything we own and start over. If only… If only…

They call it Stachybotrys, a toxic black bold, a silent destroyer of human flourishing that had been growing in our walls, and under the carpet/tile for years, most likely even before we had moved in. Maybe it was past water damage, or just Florida Humidity – who knows how it got there, but it sat silently beneath the surface of a beautiful home and spread unchecked on the inside, invisibly toxifying our air and crippling our health.

The kind Rodriguez family, who bought the house from our land lord once we moved to Atlanta, discovered it when doing renovations – they found it everywhere. After getting it tested and finding out its toxic nature, they graciously let us know, and told us to check our things. Sure enough, nearly all our possessions had it quietly growing in obvious as well as conspicuous places… We were able to find an amazing mold specialist who came along side us to help with remediation. We didn’t like his advice – to throw all of our belongings away – but for the sake of our health and our current home, we decided to trust him.

It has been a hard month, with lots of loss, lots of tears, and lots of uncertainty about why God has allowed us to go through this trial. But as the sun breaks over the horizon and sheds light into the confusion of night, God’s sweet grace has broken into our hearts these last few weeks in a way I never could have imagined. It has shown me the power of my Father in heaven, a Father who, unlike myself, never fails to protect his children.

It has shown me how amazing it is to be his child, and how amazing a family I have been born (again) into – filled with generous people who have sacrificed time, stuff, and money to help us rebuild what has been destroyed…

It is showing me my own sin ever so clearly and how when it is not realized and dealt with, it spreads like Stachybotrys and toxifies not just my soul and body, but all those around me as well.

This sweet and painful Grace is leading my heart into new depths of repentance and renovation, cutting away the colorfully painted sheetrock of all the convincing facades I put up to hide what lies beneath – revealing what is growing at the root of my addictions and behaviors that bring death instead of life to myself and others.

The cosmic eternal good news for us all is that there’s a sin specialist who looks past the facades, under the floor boards and into the core of who we are. He calls our toxic-molding sin what it is, and tells us to throw everything away, all the moldy stuff this world holds so dear that we often cling to try to find meaning and joy. He asks us to give it all up so he can renovate us, make us new, and change the very air we breathe, the way we live… fill us with his joy.

His name is Jesus…

and to the extent we trust him and his renovating work that he accomplished through his life, death, resurrection and ascension, we begin breathing with every breath the fresh air of the Spirit…

we receive healing…

we have hope…

and our world changes.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: