This May I moved into a cute lil apartment, in a cute lil neighborhood, with a cute lil roommate – my sister, Jessica. Sleeping fifty feet from my best friend, wearing whatever I want, eating her food, and singing in the shower are a couple of perks I’ve been enjoying since moving in. However, one thing I tend to grumble about is cleaning. I never thought of myself as type A (although some would disagree), but I’m super adamant about things being clean. Growing up, I would always just want to organize something, whether that be my closet, the junk drawer, or the Christmas decorations in the attic. A big L on my forehead, I know. And yes I had friends, thankyouverymuch. To this day, I’m the same way. Cleaning makes me feel productive. It’s my thing. Leave me alone.
[Semi-related side note: It is my #1 pet peeve when people say they have OCD (or any other mental disorder). You don’t like the edges of your paper bent? You hate seeing marks left on a chalkboard? That’s not OCD; there are real people out there who legitimately have this disease…perhaps you have obsessive annoying disorder instead? Girl bye.]
Anyways, I thrive off of a clean apartment. If my sister leaves the apartment and her stuff is anywhere in sight, expect me to go zero to fussy real quick. Can’t stop and won’t stop using Drake references, by the way. The question, “What if someone were to come over and see our apartment a mess?“, always runs through my mind. Two things: 1) LOL because we rarely have a visitor other than the FedEx man. 2) In reality, a “mess” is just a misplaced pillow. Sometimes I feel bad for her because she has to deal with me, but hey, what are sisters for? See: Shared closets, 24/7 counseling, tub-side towel service.
My point here is that while I’m so quick to clean all exterior things, I’m so slow to change internal things. I have no patience, occasional compassion, and revert back to my old ways often. I’ll intentionally change my direction of thought when I don’t feel like addressing what needs to be addressed. I think that if something gets too much exposure time in my brain, I’ll have to confront it; if I CTRL + ALT + DEL mid-thought process, it never even happened. I move on, unaffected. It’s like the 5-second rule when food falls on the floor, but with thoughts instead.
How crazy is it to be so particular about things being tidy and clean, yet have 50 tabs open in my head, half of which are buffering? I try to read my Bible in the morning, but will make the lamest excuse not to. I go to pray at night, but get distracted by Instagram. I come across verses that are super convicting, let it affect me for a couple hours, only to have it wear off by the afternoon. I start writing a blog post, then realize I’ve acted against everything I wrote about. Talk about a real mess.
No matter if I’m having a perfect day, or the messiest day, the thing I struggle with the most is realizing that Jesus has me covered. You know those automatic vacuums that zip across your house when you aren’t at home? If you have no idea what I’m talking about, think about the NBA. When the teams are on one side of the court, there is spastic, thorough, and continuous cleaning going on at the other end of the court. Granted, this is usually done by two pre-pubescent fans wearing polyester sweat pants, but there’s still some serious cleaning going on. Those aren’t very glamorous examples, but when you think about the concept behind it all, there’s something very ‘Jesus-y’ about them. He’s constantly taking care of my messes, even if I’ll make the same one again in twenty
minutes seconds. He takes care of the ones I’ve already made, the ones I’m not even aware I made, the accidental, and even the intentional messes. I am completely incapable of cleaning anything more than a disorganized closet, wiping off a dirty mirror, or fluffing up a pillow. I’m messy and I can’t clean myself. He does that, did that, and will continue to do that.
Although the clean freak in me doesn’t literally sweep things under the rug (brb getting hives), the sinner in me does. But He still cleans. Scrubs. Powerwashes. Blowtorches, maybe? I wanted to end with a verse that paints the most perfect picture of the Big Man cleaning up after us: “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us” – Psalm 103:12
So what do you think? I’m sure at least one of you struggles with grasping that you’re loved by the ultimate cleanser and eraser of even the messiest mistakes. Let me know! Or at least give me more metaphors so I don’t have to keep thinking about a lanky 12 year old scrubbing a basketball court. Plz n thx?