While sinkholes are common in some regions, they are not that common in New Jersey where I live. However, a few months ago my husband’s excavation company was called to remedy a sinkhole on someone’s property. The sinkhole had already compromised the swimming pool and was working its way toward the house.
The type of sinkhole that typically makes newspaper headlines is referred to as a “cover-collapse” sinkhole. Simply put, there are small cracks and voids beneath the earth’s surface that become hollowed out by water erosion. Over time, the “cover” (the earth’s surface) remains intact, with no visible evidence of what is occurring underground. However, as the hole becomes larger, the ground cover cannot support its own weight, it so it collapses…and we have a sinkhole. As it collapses, whatever was sitting on or was built upon the surface drops into the hole.
In Acts 5, we read the account of Ananias and Sapphira. You may recall that they sold a piece of property and then proceeded to lie about how much of the transaction money they were giving over to the Lord. Peter actually asks Sapphira how they could even conceive of conspiring to test the Spirit of the Lord in this way (see verse 9). The conversation and agreement that Ananias and Sapphira entered into behind closed doors developed into a sinkhole, eventually swallowing up their lives. To put it bluntly, they died and were both carried out of the city (see vs 5-6, 10).
We often fail to remember that every decision we make, every word that comes out of our mouths, every thought that we have is building on something. If our lives, thoughts, decisions and actions do not align with the Word of God, they become like water erosion, secretly carving out a cavern. We can present a good cover and build a beautiful home above ground; however, there is a battle going on beneath the surface that threatens to destroy us.
As I began this article, I talked about a real life situation with a sinkhole. Yes, the people lost their swimming pool, but the house was saved. The sinkhole was purposely widened until it was stabilized, then filled with cement before it could reach the house. In other words, it was exposed and filled before it could cause catastrophic damage.
God is faithful about exposing things in our lives if we allow Him to do so. His desire is always to bring things (behaviors, mindsets, etc.) to our attention before they become catastrophic. I suggest that if Ananias and Sapphira had been honest, their “sinkhole” would have been filled in (with God’s forgiveness), and their lives would not have literally “collapsed.” Whenever God reveals a sinkhole in our lives, it is an opportunity for healing. God desires that our foundations be built on the rock (Matthew 7:24-27), not on shifting sands or sinkholes!
As I mentioned previously, the natural sinkhole was filled with cement. The amazing thing about our God is that He takes that area where erosion has taken place and fills it with His Holy Spirit. If we allow Him to do this, He takes away all the jagged edges and gaping holes. As we permit Him to bring about His healing, our mindsets and behaviors change, coming into alignment with His word. As our mindsets and behaviors come into alignment with who He is and who He created us to be, that destructive hole not only closes, but it bears fruit. As we partner with Holy Spirit, allowing Him to work in our lives, we will see fruit. We must understand that fruit attempting to grow above a sinkhole is incapable of getting the nutrients it requires in order to reach maturity. However, fruit that grows in soil tended by God is full of life. Galatians 5:22-23 describes the fruit of the Spirit as love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. Furthermore, we are told to do everything in love (1 Corinthians 16:14) and that we don’t need to grieve because the joy of the Lord is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10).
If you find that you have a sinkhole in your life, don’t try to cover it up. In fact, uncover it and allow the Lord to reclaim the ground that has been stolen. His desire for each one of us is that we walk in the fullness of our destiny. You were created to soar, not to sink!