I’m not ironing the preacher’s shirts today. I’m washing windows. Spring warmth and gentle breezes proved enough inspiration to grab the glass cleaner and some rags. I wanted a clearer view of the world.
Most of our windows are the tilt-in type. I like those. Being an “indoorsy” girl, I love the idea of accomplishing an “outdoorsy” task right from my bedroom, bathroom, or living room! I don’t need a ladder, good knees to climb said ladder, or the coordination it takes to juggle all my cleaning equipment while on the ladder. I can even wash a few windows in inclement weather.
Being sure the problem was not a dirty world but rather a dirty view, I plunged into action. I quickly developed a satisfactory system. Push the bottom window up enough to tilt it out, pull down the top window and tip it out. Clean the outside of the top window first, working through the build-up until the final towel wipes clean and the window shines. Then clean and polish the inside pane. Pop it back into place and heave it back up. Clean the outside, then the inside of the bottom window using the same technique. Push it all the way up and tackle the sill.
Yuck! I hate cleaning the sill. So much dirt gathers there. It’s not a dusty dirt, easily cleared with a couple of puffs. No such luck. Cleaning the sill requires using the fingernails to scratch the compacted grime out of myriad corners and crevices. It gets a bit discouraging when wiping the crud out of one section flips dirt back onto the section that was just wiped clean. And the bugs! They lie on their backs, awaiting the final shove out to their final resting place. (I gladly indulge them with quick swipes and a scrunched up nose.)
Looking through crystal clear panes as the sun goes down makes the effort quite satisfying.
The project yesterday was going well. However, I didn’t get too far into it before the lesson hit me like a two by four.
The bathroom window is a bit higher, but with tilt-in windows, I can still reach both panes. I had gotten as far into the process as the sill. Suddenly I realized I’d been straddling a small stool our grandsons use. Well, huh! Why didn’t I make it just a tiny bit easier by using the stool?
So I stepped up and resumed my work. I honestly thought I’d just about finished, but when I stepped up that one extra step, I was horrified to see all the crud I’d missed! With a new perspective, from above, I found I had a great deal more to do before I could consider it clean.
Boom! That’s when it hit me.
My life is a filthy sill, coated with the world’s grime. I’m certain I have dead bugs meriting a mighty kick, once and for all, out of my heart. Bugs of pride, bitterness, and discontentment. Though I try to keep up with confessing and forsaking my sin, I have plenty of room for improvement. Sin stifles blessings. It clouds my fellowship with Him. When it builds into cynicism and pride, sin can make me unfit for use.
With so much at stake, why do I often find it so easy to glibly spout off an apology and add a promise to try harder to do right?
When I see sin through God’s eyes, I understand how much deep-cleaning my life actually needs. My sin becomes disgusting to me, just as it is to Him. I recognize my filthiness.
Psalm 119:9 shows me how to be wiped thoroughly clean.
“Wherewithal shall a young man [or anyone] cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to Thy Word.”
Examining life from my limited, horizontal perspective skews my vision. The truth is gained only through God’s Word. Thoughts of “small” sins vanish as I realize any sin makes me unclean. My desire for a thorough washing grows under the scrutiny of the Lord’s perspective.
He desires to clean me up.
I am ready to be thoroughly washed. Spotless from every angle!
And I know it will be worth it at the end of the day!