Expectant Prayers ®

Jennifer Jo Weiss

Opinions of Cleanliness

Different people have different opinions of what cleanliness is!   For my little boys -  they think if they have the dirty underwear and clothes off the floor and most of their things put away, then the room is clean.   Never mind the waded up used tissues lying beside the trashcan, the matchbox cars on top of the night stand, the fact that their beds are half-way made - and perhaps half the mattress hanging off one side, the dust a quarter of an inch thick on the dressers, mountains of items shoved into the closet, and fingerprints all up and down the wall mirror!    To me, that is NOT clean!  I've had to tell them on numerous occasions now, "Boys, that is just not acceptable!"

Now that we are trying to move, I guess I am even more obsessive about how clean the house stays.  Knowing that other people are going to come in and look at the house; it adds an element of pressure and somewhat fear that our house will be judged according to what's on the inside.   I usually am a reasonably neat housekeeper (so I have been told), but feeling the weight of the accountability makes me even more determined to keep the eight people and dog who live in this house under a watchful eye!  

Isn't it funny how we think our lives are all clean, but in reality they may not be?  None of us are perfect, but are continually being perfected by a perfect and awesome God! 

 He is the plumb line - the definition of what is clean, right, honest, just, pure, lovely, etc.    We may think we've cleaned up an area of our hearts only to find out that according to God, it is not pleasing or acceptable to Him.   Is it really our heart cry to let the words of our mouths and the thoughts of our hearts be pleasing and acceptable to Him?   (Psalm 19:14)  Unfortunately, many have lost the conviction (and perhaps definition) of what sin is.  We don't realize that the mess we have going on inside is exactly how God judges us.  Man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart!   (1 Samuel 16:7).     Do we even really grasp that we are accountable to God and each other for our spiritual house?  His watchful eye sees all and knows all.  There isn't any crack or crevasse that goes unnoticed.

Relativism is of no consequence.  We tend to judge how well we are doing spiritually by comparing ourselves to what is going on in an ever increasing evil world.  

Take this as an example.  We had new carpet installed just a few years ago all over our house.  We've noticed that there was some wear and dirt, so over time we've cleaned the carpets a few times.  They looked clean, but nothing is like removing a piece of furniture from the room to reveal how clean the unaffected carpet was and how dingy the exposed carpet had become.   Once you see how different the comparison is based upon the unaltered truth - it's eye opening.    The same is for the Word of God - His truth unaltered and revealed to man.  We will not be judged against anything except the pure Word of God. 

One helpful hint is that we should allow God to examine our hearts daily - to remove the unneeded clutter and trash and show us what clean really is!   As with cleaning a physical house, daily maintenance is better than trying to fix or clean months or years worth of messes!

My prayer for us today as the body of Christ is that we will allow the Holy Spirit to show us what clean really is and to not justify, accept, defend, or hold onto anything that is unclean.   May He wash us with the power of Jesus blood, the water of the Word, and the cleansing purifying fire of His Spirit!   We want our lives to shine with His light, not through dirty windows, cracks in the foundation, or anything else.   May we be pleasing and acceptable to Him today  - as a bride getting ready for her wedding.   After all, He desires to come for a church that is without spot or wrinkle!


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