The Importance of Cleaning—Inside and Out

When it comes to our faith, seeing clearly involves some spiritual elbow grease.

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Cleaning windows

Spring cleaning descended–albeit briefly–at our house this past weekend. I decided to clean the windows. I got out the Windex, the roll of paper towels and went to work.

One upside (there’s gotta be an upside) to cleaning is that you see results. The dishes were dirty in your sink? Get a sponge with some soap and water. Next thing you know they’re clean.

You can’t see clearly out of the windows because of some smudges. Bingo. A few squirts of the Windex and scrubbing the paper towel. They’re clean.

How I wished I could do the same with my own smudges, my own faults, my sins. Would that I could always see clearly. Would that I understood better. Would that I had a heavenly view of things.

If only cleaning the soul were as easy as washing windows.

I did the outside of one window. Got all that winter grime off and backed up to inspect my work. To my surprise the glass still looked flat. No sparkle. None of that clarity.

Then I turned to the inside.

More squirting, more elbow grease, more wiping. And when I backed away, wow, what a difference.

You could see the beautiful spring day on the other side of the glistening glass, the sun on the lawn, the light on the trees, the crystal clear air.

Okay, God, I thought, there’s the message here.  

Listen to what God said to the Pharisees: “You clean the outside of the cup and plate, but inside they are full of violence and pleasure seeking. Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup so that the outside of the cup will be clean too.”

Seeing clearly means cleaning up inside and out.

Time to take a little Windex to my soul. 

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