Preventive maintenance (PM) can avoid many problems…whether in a nuclear power plant, the home, your car…yourself. In the nuclear power plant, PM on pumps, valves, diesel generators, etc., increase safety and reliability of overall operation of the plant by minimizing component failure during operation. In your home, you most likely do things like change the furnace filter or sharpen the lawn mower blade, change the batteries in smoke detectors or clean the dryer vent of lint. Just like the nuclear power plant, you do these things to keep things in working order. On your car, I’m sure you change the oil and filter regularly as well as wind shield wipers or rotating your tires so that you are more likely to drive safely and with a lower incidence of accidents.
So, how does PM apply to you? I’ll suggest a few ideas and then let you provide some of your own insights. Psalm 1 provides a good starting point – the blessings that come from a finely tuned Christian life…specifically, the choices we make in life are important. More importantly, your private life does have an influence on your public life. PM here is grounded in a lifestyle captivated by God’s truth both inwardly and outwardly.
In keeping with this thought, is the message of Mark 12:28-34. Love…it’s a word I think is often abused and misused. The standard of loving God with everything I am, heart, soul, mind and strength is daunting. So many things in our lives compete with this simple, yet complex standard of living. And then, love my neighbor as myself brings to the surface a whole litany of issues. Issues like loving myself for starters – so many have trouble here. Then, what about loving that unlovable neighbor? What if we could really get this right? Can you imagine the possibilities? Is it possible to see ourselves, and the world, not as we are or as it is currently, but as it could be? Possibilities…with PM.
I could come up with many more passages, however, I am hoping that you will join in with PM ideas of your own. The last one I’ll offer up has to do with our prayer lives and there are so many wonderful prayer passages: Philippians 4:6-7, 1 Thessalonians 5:17, Psalm 39. The passage I chose is Matthew 6:5-15. We say this prayer numerous times throughout the year but I would offer that it is critical to your individual daily PM. “Thy will be done”, “forgive us our debts (sins) as we forgive our debtors (those who sin against us)”…powerful words that are incredibly challenging. This passage begs us to think about our prayer life – not about how fancy our words can be or how many adjectives we can string together. This passage begs us to remember that God knows what we need before we ask…it begs us to listen to God – to determine his will for our lives and then live it out. PM from the One who wrote the owners manual on the subject and from the One who showed us what such a life could look like – Jesus.
So, what do you think? How are you doing on your own PM plan? What are some of your PM ideas? A solid PM “plan”, when grounded in Jesus, will get each of us through the many problem areas life hands us as well as affording us the many joys that can only come from the many blessings our God affords.