On a lovely Saturday evening in early 2016 a colleague from work came visiting. I had just moved into a new apartment. Before her visit, I asked her in the office what she likes, and if she eats a particular food, I’d like to cook. She said that’s okay. The day she was going to visit, I was up early on a Saturday (as I usually do sleep in till late). I clean the whole apartment which was a two bedroom apartment with two bathrooms. Everywhere polished, flawless and in pristine condition. The tiles completely sparkling and the carpet which I physically hand brushed looks immaculate.
I packed the dishes, made sure I had fresh hand towels and toilet rolls in both toilets. I spruce up the laundry room, clean the dust from the study area, the TV and everywhere I sighted dust. I cleaned that apartment as if expecting a royal delegate. I mean I went all out, you would have wondered if the Prime Minister of Australia was visiting, rather than a colleague. The cushions on the sofa excellently laid and styled in such a way to attract attention. I had the books on the bookshelf all nicely arrayed in alphabetical order. The kitchen bench and sink looking squeaky clean. I had the whole interior of the apartment looking ‘take me away with you.’
The doors to both bedrooms opened so as to exhibit the spotless and beautifully spread bedsheets with matching quilt covers and pillows. I was all out to impress my colleague. Then I showered and put on my smart casual evening outfit, seated on the couch waiting for her to call so I can pick her up from downstairs as the apartment complex was highly secured and one must have an entry pass to swipe through the main entrance so you can enter the building. While sitting on the sofa, my eyes were galavanting to and fro the tiled floor looking for any missed stain. I was not ready to give any stain or dirt the chance of being skipped during the cleaning process.
A few minutes later she rang to say that she has arrived. I went downstairs and opened the garage door for her to park her car. She came in, and I gave her a tour of the house, I can tell she was quite impressed with the beauty of the apartment and the view of the skyline right above my bedroom windows. We had a lovely time talking, eating and chatting before she left. However, I got convicted later.
How many times have we gone all out to impress people about us? We want to impress people with where we work, live and all that, just because we want people to take away good report about us. We hide things around that we don’t want people to see because you and I don’t want them to know what we do behind closed doors. If you live a messy life, then you don’t want people to see that, so you clean up before they come. If you live a life contrary to God’s word behind closed doors, you quickly try to straighten up as soon as you hear someone’s visiting. So we end up living a life of ‘keeping up appearance.’ Having a mask of who we are not when we are around people and then quickly run back to our old ways as soon as everyone’s gone. Question, who are we fooling? Not God? Because He sees and knows everything, we do even in the darkest places.
My conviction was this, how often do we do things just for God. How often do we clean our lives up for God? I cleaned that house sparkling for a colleague, but when was the last time I had my life, attitude, character and behaviour cleaned up for God. When was the last time I paid attention to the messy behaviour and unruly attitude in me, and ask God to clean it up so my life can reflect that of Christ’s? Isn’t it surprising the miles we go through just to please and impress one another, but we rarely go through that same process in getting our lives pleasing to God? How do we clean our lives up for God? By spending time in reading and dwelling in His Word, because the Word is a purifier and the Bible says in Ephesians 5:26 that Christ purifies His church (which is you and me) by the washing of the water of His word. Why does He do that? So that He might present us to Himself a glorious church not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she (you and I) should be holy and without blemish. Wow! What a statement!
That’s my conviction; yours may be different.
Has any of us ever felt like cleaning our homes just for the sake of God? Is it because we can’t see Him like we see our friends and families? Just because we can’t see Him doesn’t mean He’s not there. Maybe it’s time for you and me to do a clean-up of our lives and also our homes because we know the things in our houses that are not pleasing to God. Let’s do something for Him and just say, God; I did this for You. The same way you’ll go miles of welcoming someone in your home, making them feel comfortable and preparing great meals for them, how about you do something special for the Giver of Life.
I pray that you and I response to any conviction the Lord places in our hearts, and invite The Holy Spirit to guide us into repentance and help us live the life God has commanded and destined for us to live.
How often have you gone all out to do something pleasing just for God?
What is He convicting you to do? Are you working on them? Remember, His Grace is available for you.
Comments are welcome.