Tuesday, August 7, 2007

The Aquarium of Our Hearts

The fish tank in my kitchen had gotten so green that we could barely make out the few fish we had left in there. Finally they passed onto a better life, where I imagine they can swim in pure blue water for eternity. We took the tank outside, hosed it down, and left it in the sun for a few days. Separately, we rinsed off the gravel and left them in the sun as well. Yesterday we filled the tank with fresh water, tested the pH, and let it rise to room temperature. Today we got a new filter cartridge and ten new fish.

We always get tetras because they are the “cleanest” fish. These small but colorful species can survive for many months, even without regular water changes. We asked for one of each type, as well as a catfish. It took about an hour for the lady to catch all ten. They seemed a little nervous as we first put them into their new environment, sticking together and hugging the gravel. But after an hour they were eager to explore the apparent openness of their confine.

My water frustrations this summer extend beyond the fish tank. I spend more time maintaining my pool than actually swimming in it. And there has been so much rain on Long Island this season that we have had to cancel our beach-going plans several times because of beach closures due to “run-off contamination”.

I am reminded of the ever-renewing waters of Baptism. Just one time awash in the Christening waters is required and a clean heart is there free for the asking. No chlorination, no algaecide, no sun filtration is needed. From infancy on, I come to the same Water to quench my thirst, to be refreshed, and to be made clean. Because these waters run ever-present in my heart, I will enter the Heavenly House of my Maker purer than the most pristine earthly aquifer.

“One Lord, one faith, one baptism.”
Ephesians 4:5

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