Monday, August 10, 2009

Cleaning House

Taking my previous post one step further, my wife brought up another sanctification analogy today. We recently moved to a new home in Richmond, Virginia; and though the house is a huge blessing, the kitchen was really dirty. Olivia has spent hours laboriously peeling back layers of film and grime. Yuck.

"As I kept cleaning," she said, "it just seemed like there was still more grime!" She made the connection that, like Christian growth, it's not like our kitchen wasn't getting cleaner; it was just that bad to begin with. As more and more of the dirt and corruption of our sin is uncovered and brought to our attention, it's not necessarily that we aren't getting "cleaner." It's just that we were even more sinful and rotten to begin with than we had ever realized. Like a bad mold, the grime of Adam's rebellion--and ours--goes so deep and fills every corner and crevice of our being--our thoughts, perceptions, attitudes, emotions, desires, words, and actions--that we need much more than just a spring cleaning (see Jesus' teaching in Matthew 12:43-45). We need the whole house to be torn down and built anew.

But thankfully we have a Savior who was a carpenter, and even more than a carpenter. "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come" (2 Corinthians 5:17).


Halfmom said...

Based on the yuck she cleaned today, I'd say she is prepared to clean almost anything!

The word verification is "phydry" - kinda funny considering her day was anything but dry!

Andrew said...

I'll say! It was nasty! (Our sump tank clogged and overflowed.)

Kevin DeYoung said...


I wasn't sure how to get a hold of you, what with the move and all. So I thought I'd try your blog. Thanks for the letter you sent in July. I'm excited to hear about marriage! I hope to meet your better half someday. About the salad dressing, I was thinking of a conversation with a different American returning from Turkey, but perhaps you made a similar comment. Again, thanks for the note. It was good to hear from you. All the best to you and Olivia in Richmond (Virginia is for lovers, eh?).

Ted M. Gossard said...

Yes. Well said. It's important to know just how deep seeded sin and self-centeredness is in us, as we learn the new way in Jesus.

Though I don't like or agree with the continual pounding I hear Christians giving themselves, about what wretches they are, I also believe there is something important in that witness to take away. That we indeed need to realize that there is much God still needs to do, in making us into the image of his Son.

Halfmom said...

bought time to update this thing, don't you think??

Andrew said...


You know, that sounds like a fine idea--if only I had some content to update this with!