I will freely admit that I am not the best housekeeper in the world. I am certainly no Martha, worried about everything being perfectly in order. I suspect that before the big dinner at which Martha complained to Jesus that Mary was not helping her, Martha had spent days cleaning, cooking, and preparing for the arrival of guests. See Luke 10:38-42. All of which probably wasn’t terribly necessary because I doubt Martha ever let her house get messy or dirty, or her cupboards get bare, in the first place.
Today I have been getting ready for company to come visit and stay the night. As I’ve been cleaning, it has occurred to me that some things would be less work to clean if I spent time each week cleaning instead of waiting until company is on the way. But I’m usually much more like Mary. The house could fall down around me while I read blogs or my Bible or a good C.S. Lewis book and I might never notice. Until we are going to have company; then I realize it’s time to get to work. (Although I have to admit that I am not completely done with my cleaning chores for today, and yet here I am blogging!)
As I cleaned today, it occurred to me that cleaning only occasionally is a lot like only confessing my sins occasionally. If I ignore even the little sins and don’t go before the Lord to ask for forgiveness regularly, they can start to build up and then they are harder to deal with. It’s kind of like that little bit of hairspray that falls to the bathroom floor each day when I style my hair. That tiny bit on Monday doesn’t seem like much, nor does the tiny bit the next day, or the day after that. But if the floor doesn’t get cleaned after a few days there will be a terrible build up that requires hands-and-knees type of scrubbing to get rid of.
I doubt that my cleaning habits are going to change. One of these days I’m just going to hire a housekeeper to do the basic regular cleaning, but until then I’ll keep looking for the great spiritual lessons that can be gleaned from a good deep cleaning session. But today’s lesson has made me more conscious of my need to include confession in my daily prayer.
How about you? Is it time for a deep spiritual clean and a new habit of regular confession to keep those little sins from building up?
Well, now I gotta get back to the cleaning. I may not be the best housekeeper in the world, but with a little help from my son I know I can get this place looking great.