Friday, February 8, 2013

A Messy Sink...A Messy, Forgiven Life

     The last of the dishes had been rinsed and placed neatly into the dishwasher.  The detergent had been added and the start button pressed.  As I listened to the dishwasher sing out it's familiar hum; water sloshing about, I turned my attention to the sink.  I have to admit, I was a little repulsed by the sight of half-chewed food pieces littered across the bottom of the sink, the moldy and now unrecognizable meal from two weeks ago (maybe more) that had mysteriously resurfaced at the front of my refrigerator, and the half-burnt remnants scraped off of the bottom of my favorite cast iron skillet.  Pausing for a moment, I contemplated whether or not it was really a wise idea for me to stick my hands into the nasty conglomeration of what I felt sure was a bacteria infested mess.  Thinking through the alternatives, I leaned over and grabbed a long plastic spoon reasoning it would do a more effective job at shoving the food remains down into the garbage disposal shoot than my delicate fingers would.  Feeling quite satisfied with my brilliant idea, I proceeded to push the bits and pieces of God knows what into the narrow opening of the disposer.

    Resting the spoon on the edge of the sink for a moment, I reached over, flipped the "magic switch", and watched in wonder as the large chunks of nastiness slowly became pulverized and sucked deeply into the belly of the disposer.  When I was quite satisfied that nothing remained of the bacteria ridden mess that had once covered the bottom of the sink, I flipped the "magic switch" back to the off position.  Suddenly, I questioned, "What happens to the pulverized muck once it is sucked downward into the pipes?  Where does all of the garbage that once littered my sink end up?"  (Come on, I know that secretly, all of you have wondered the same thing...there is no shame in admitting it:))

     Suddenly, my attention was quickly arrested and refocused, bringing to mind the truth that, like the sink, I have a lot of trash and garbage in my life; the truth that not of single one of us is capable of living up to God's perfect, just standards.  Our lives are just plain messy, right?...littered with sin. 

Scripture says:

 “ for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” 
                                                             (Rom.  3:23).  

     Staring at the now empty sink, still stained with the grotesque reminder of what was once there, I thought of another question; one of eternal significance:
 "Where does all of the "garbage" or sin in my life end up?."  

      Am I the only one who has ever wondered this?  Am I the only one who has felt enslaved by the mounting measure of sin piling up, bringing with it haunting memories of regret and condemnation?  I doubt it...

      Grabbing the spray bottle filled with my favorite homemade antibacterial cleaner (Grapefruit Seed Extract, vinegar, a few drops of tea tree oil, and water), I intentionally sprayed a thick coating onto the bottom and sides of the sink.  Despite the fact that I couldn't see any remaining germs or bacteria, I knew from science class that microscopic and nasty germs were still there, no matter how much I wanted to convince myself that they were not.  Slowly and methodically I scrubbed, making certain not to miss a single spot.  As I watched the small steam of water from the faucet above slapping gently against the bottom of the now sparkly stainless steel sink, a gentle whisper swept past..a whisper filled with grace-filled words, lovingly surrounding me with hope and peace ...

..."as far as the east is from the west,
 so far do I  remove your transgressions, child."... 
                                  (taken from Psalm 103:12)

..."If you confess your sins, 
 I am faithful and just to forgive you 
and cleanse you from all unrighteousness"...
                                (taken from 1 John 1:9)

..."I will again have compassion on you, Satin;
I will tread your iniquities underfoot.
and cast all your sins into the depths of the sea."...
                                 (taken from Micah 7:19) 

 ..."I will forgive you for the wicked things you've done,
 and I will remember your sins no more.”...

                                 (taken from Heb.  8:12)

..."And you, who were dead in your trespasses...
 I made alive...having forgiven you all your trespasses,   
by canceling the record of debt that stood against you with its legal demands. This I set aside, nailing them to the cross."...
                                  (taken from Colossians 2:13-14)

      Turning off the faucet, I watched the last few trickles of water spiral down, gliding across the now clean surface below..and I smiled...not because my sink was finally free of the awful germ infestation that once had the upper hand; for I knew that soon half-eaten particles of food, clumps of mystery casserole from several weeks back, and burnt chunks scraped off of my favorite skillet would once again litter the bottom.  No... 

I smiled knowing with full assurance that all of the garbage (sin) of my life has been  
                                  thrown far away;
           buried deeply 
into the depths of the sea    

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