The Fly in the Ointment

Continue in prayer, and be watchful with thanksgiving …

— Colossians 4:2

Sir Noel Paton was an outstanding artist. His paintings always have one unusual feature: There are beautiful flowers and gorgeous birds, knights and ladies, gossamer-winged fairies, and children of seraphic beauty. However, always, somewhere down in the corner of the painting, or at the feet of these beautiful characters, is a form that is uncouth, repulsive, and repugnant, a loathsome creature such as a toad or a lizard or a slimy snail to render, by contrast with their repulsiveness, greater beauty to the rest.

This is how it is with the New Testament. We see Christ in all of His glory crucified between two thieves. There are twelve apostles, and one of them is a devil.

Rather than thank God for all His blessings, it is much easier to have a “fly complex.” I do not know if you have ever detected this in your own life, but I have. The old “fly in the ointment.”

Many of us, it seems, spend a great deal of our time counting the flies in the ointment of life. We need to realize that there is never going to be a jar of ointment in this world that does not have some flies in it. The question really comes down to whether we see the flies or the ointment. You can almost divide people into two kinds: There are the “fly people” and there are the “ointment people.” Which are you?

Question to ponder:
What is the “ointment” you are thankful for today?