Some time ago I lived in a basement suite I refer to as ‘the dungeon’. It was large enough and a reasonably good place to live, but had no access to a washer/dryer for getting my laundry done. Consequently I used a ‘drop off’ laundry service that was a few blocks away. I dropped off my dirty stuff every Saturday morning, and returned each Saturday afternoon to retrieve freshly washed and neatly folded clothes.
I learnt that irregardless of how careful we are or how meticulous we live, our clothes are going to get dirty.
There is a parallel to humans embedded here as well. Humans also get dirty. I am not referring to the kind of dirty that having a shower can easily fix, but the kind of dirty that leaves us with feelings of guilt and shame. That kind of dirty. And whether we are Christians or non Christians, irregardless of how careful we are or how meticulous we live, inevitably from time to time, we are going to get dirty.
We won’t always make the best decisions. We won’t always say the right things. We won’t always capitalize on good opportunities. We won’t always be in a good mood. We may sometimes act unfriendly to others. We may sometimes even lie or cheat or steal, and not admit it.
Yup, we sometimes do things that leave us feeling guilty. We sometimes do things that leave us feeling ashamed. We sometimes get dirty.
Along with all of that, there are also times when feelings of guilt show up and we don’t really know why. It does not seem connected to any specific thing that we have said or done. Yet there it is, pulling us down emotionally, making us somewhat moody, grumpy, even angry.
Whether due to some action or inaction on our part, or some other reason that we are not aware of, we need to be washed, to be cleansed, so that we can like ourselves again and feel comfortable in our own skin.
Being washed can take various forms. Maybe we need to apologize to someone and ask their forgiveness. Maybe we need to simply anti-up and admit that we did wrong. Maybe there are issues between you and a friend that needs to be resolved. Maybe there are issues between you and God that needs to be resolved.
During the last meal Jesus ate with His Disciples on the night that He was arrested, Jesus took a time-out and washed their feet. It was to be symbolic picture of them being cleansed by Him.
Whether you are a Christian or non Christian, God says…
If we claim we have no sin (I.e. don’t need to be washed), we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.(1 John 1:8-9 NLT)
God is willing to wash us, even if it has nothing to do with admission of guilt. He washes and refreshes us when we spend time reading the Bible.
The Bible tells us that;
Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word.(Ephesians 5:25-27 NLT)
The night that Jesus washed the feet of the Disciples, Peter initially refused the offer. He felt not worthy enough to have Jesus do such a service to him. After Jesus explained that without that washing Peter would be the equivalent of an outsider, Peter went all in.
Invite God to wash you.
Invite Him into your life to wash away the nitty gritties that make us feel dirty.
He won’t step into your personal space without an invitation from you. God gave us this life and has freed us to live it as we will. Please note however that He holds us accountable for how we live it and the choices that we make.
Make a good choice; Get washed.