I scrubbed. I cried. And the Spirit convicted.
I rubbed the wall. I wanted it to be clean. Almost desperate, my strokes were vigorous I didn't want it to be drab, so I scrubbed those stains. Mustering up all my elbow grease to make the wall better.
I really didn't want it to be like her house.
"Why Kathleen?" came nudge of the Spirit's in a thought.
Because I didn't want to be like her.
"Why is that Kathleen? I died for her just as much as I died for you."
And I cried.
Because I knew that the desire not to be like her energized my cleaning.
I didn't want such a run-down place.
I want my house to look like the magazines.
But...instead.. it seems my house is more like hers.
Which might mean that I am more like her than I dare admit.
And that is why I scrub so hard tonight.
I swallow the lump in my throat and continue to scrub.
But not quite as hard.
She does not turn anyone's head when she walks by. Neither do I.
She doe not have recruiters banging down her door to offer her a job. Neither do I.
Her appearance, her life is not together. It is not a life any of us strive for. My life? Well, perhaps it makes for a better appearance but is it truly better? Does it really hinge on a clean white wall?
I might be more like her than I dare to admit.
She is a mom.
She is married.
Yep, I share this too.
She cares about her kids. She's proud of them.
Uh-huh. Of course I share this, too.
She is the one who invited me to her house and welcomed me in as if I was one of them. She smiles at me. She has brought me shoes when she heard me complaining about the lack of shoes that my children have. She has been kinder to me than I have been to her.
Then these words came to mind:
"The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart." I Samuel 16:7b
I am guilty. I look at outward appearances.
I scrub my walls wishing them to look like designer walls featured in Better Homes and Garden. When in truth, they are downcast and scrubby. More like hers. Perhaps I should admit that I am more like her and actually be more like her: welcoming, inviting, giving.
Forgive me Lord for judging by outward appearances.
Change my heart, O God.
Thank you for humbling me through the scrubbing of a white, blank wall.
Linking with Jen and the SDG women.