Everyone knows the feeling. Company is coming for dinner, the bathroom still needs to be cleaned, floors are barely swept and you are frantically changing the baby’s diaper explosion. Ok, so maybe not everyone knows that specific scenario but insert your own life experience and I’m sure you’ll get the picture.
Anyway, that was us to a a certain degree today. It seems to me that I am the most efficient cleaner in those few minutes before the doorbell is expected to ring. Also, I must have a second set of eyes, because I am able to much more clearly see all the things that need to be cleaned or dusted that apparently I was unable to discern just days prior. It’s rather embarrassing really. We are capable of being much more prepared.
Maybe you’re not like me. And if you aren’t like me, I’m rather jealous of you. If you aren’t like me, then you sweep and vacuum your floors often, and if you happen to have a dog that likes to roll around in the dust and dirt then you sweep and vacuum multiple times a day. You also don’t have a 4 year old boy using your bathrooms. And you have some kind of stain and grease resistant kitchen counter tops that don’t require constant scrubbing.
I’m being sarcastic of course. I know that there are people out there who are much better cleaners than I am, and I’m sure somewhere there is someone who is a worse cleaner (maybe). Regardless, I am always amazed at how much cleaning I get done before someone comes over. Amazed and dismayed. If I can clean this well and quickly before someone comes to my house, why can’t I do it all the time?
As I was musing on this while sweeping the floor this afternoon, wishing I was more prepared, I thought about how I’m not the only one with this kind of problem. In fact, there were people with my same or similar issue all the way back to Jesus’ time. Think about it, especially as an issue of preparedness. Jesus tells a parable about 10 virgins waiting for the bridegroom to arrive. 5 were wise and prepared, bringing extra oil with them just in case the bridegroom was late. 5 were not so wise. When the bridegroom did arrive, late, only 5 women had enough oil to light their lamps.
Cultivating a habit of preparation might be in order for our household. Rather than frantically piecing together the house, we are very capable of systematically keeping order, if we make it a priority.
Jesus told His disciples that He would return again, and the early Christians believed that His second coming was imminent. Time has continued to pass and we are still waiting for Jesus to come. The Church hasn’t changed it’s stance on this, we are in fact still waiting for Jesus to return. Even though so much time has passed, our level of preparation should not be any different than those early Christians.
Just like our physical houses need to be kept clean and orderly, so do our spiritual houses, our inner selves. Do we pray regularly? If we do pray, are we taking time to listen to God as well as speak to Him? Do we spend time in quiet reflection, contemplating how we make decisions and discerning the direction of our lives? Do we belong to a worshiping community that helps us stay accountable to the morals and virtues espoused by our faith? Do we share our faith with others, especially our spouse and children?
Personally, I believe that when I have good spiritual habits and practices, it is easier for me to keep other areas of my life, my home included, in good order. What do you think?
Feel free to leave comments and join in the conversation! =)