Wednesday, June 13

Life Lessons from Car Washing

Just yesterday I decided it was time, once again, to wash the car. It had been a while since it was last washed, and seeing as the car is white and has traveled quite a bit, it was rather obvious that the car was not in its most pristine state. So I got out the necessary supplies and went to work with the help of my mother.
Whenever I wash the car one specific temptation presents itself. You may be wondering what on earth kind of temptation can be presented when washing the car. Well, I'm not sure if anyone else has this particular temptation, but when I wash the car I tend to lose my initial enthusiasm and get a bit tired as I progress. When this starts happening, I am always really tempted not to scrub quite as vigorously, or to overlook small spots that don't come off easily. I get tired and don't feel like cleaning the car as meticulously as I should; I am tempted not to do a completely thorough job.
This same temptation presents itself in other areas of my life as well. Often when I take a look at my heart, I realize that it's not in the most pristine state. There are sins that have lodged themselves in my heart; sins that take time and vigorous scrubbing to completely remove from my life. Jesus forgives our sins, and promises us victory over them, but I find myself struggling sometimes to stop repeating the same sins over and over again. When this happens, I am tempted not to do a thorough job in cleaning my heart. I get tired of my relapses into the same sinful habits I thought I had conquered in Christ, and I become tempted not to scrub quite as vigorously, just to overlook this one small spot.
I've always been told that any job worth doing is worth doing well. When I'm washing my car, this phrase plays over and over in my head when the temptation presents itself not to do a thorough job, and it helps me find the determination I need to scrub just a little harder. I think the same principle applies when I'm cleaning my heart. If I'm not going to have Jesus help me remove all the sin from my life, die to self, and allow his Holy Spirit to live in my heart, then it's not worth doing. I can't harbor these sins in my life and overlook one "small" spot here and there while professing to live my life for God. When I am confronted with sin that has lodged itself in my heart, I need to remember the importance of doing a thorough job and find the determination to scrub just a little harder. And when the temptation presents itself to overlook, I can draw my strength and resolve from Christ.

"It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect." 2 Samuel 22:33
"Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always." 1 Chronicles 16:11
"For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him." 2 Chronicles 16:9a

9 comments:

Kristin said...

A good story to look at that has parallels to this thought is in Nehemiah chapter 4; especially verses 10-14.

Alex said...

What happens if we don't have the urge to even start washing our car to begin with?

roadrunner said...

Yeah. I agree with Alex. My problem is getting started with the car. After I start, because I'm so short, I'm having a blast climbing on top of it, and scrubbing, and adjusting the nozzle on the hose to different types of sprays...It's so much fun! But then again, I can't remember the last time I washed my car.

You make an even better point on the religious side. It is a very difficult process.

Kristin said...

Motivation seems to be lacking quite often for me as well- whether washing my car or cleaning my heart. Prayer works wonders on motivation for cleaning out your heart. I find that when I don't have any desire to clean up my act, if I pray and ask God to put that desire in my heart, before I know it motivation comes.
As for finding the motivation to wash my car..... I'm still working on that .

Paul said...

at least you wash your car, mine hasn't been cleansed in years. happily, God is more faithful in washing me than I am in washing my car

TBird said...

soon....

TBird said...

i have an idea.

Kristin said...

Oh?

Bivan said...

so a new post would be splendid :)