Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Jesus Does the Dishes

On Saturday I was doing my devotion when I ran across this verse,
"Blind Pharisee!  First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside will be clean." (Matthew 23:26)
That's our Savior who's not making much sense.  Big surprise, right?

I thought about the passage briefly before concluding I will continue to wash both the inside and the outside of my dishes.

They are really talking about dishes.  Or are they?

The previous verse says,

"You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence" (Matthew 23:25b).
What if they aren't really talking about dishes?  What if Jesus is calling us to be the cup and the dish?

All too often we try to change our outwards appearance.  Put on some make-up.  Pick a different shirt.  Act more kindly to that person.  Serve this person.  Surely that makes us a better Christian, right?

According to what Jesus said right here, wrong.

We can do all of the "nice things" on the outside and make us look like good Christians but until our heart is changed it's all futile.  I do not believing having your heart changed is a one-time deal.  Boom you're done and you know everything there is to know.  No.

Having your heart changed is a lifetime process.  Rid yourself of some greed here.  Pride there.  Put in some joy take out some hatred.  A process.  Just like washing dishes.  And just like washing dishes, as soon as you think you're done, you find one more.  One more problem area that needs to be dealt with.  One more outburst of anger you weren't expecting.  One more nudge from Christ saying, "Hey, you forgot about this.  That's not of me."

What I believe Jesus is saying in the verse is if He changes your heart, if He cleans your inside, your outsides will follow.  Change in the inside, the desire, and the outside, the action, will change too.

It makes me think of the song, "Change me from the inside out, Lord."

Feel free to join me in making this your prayer for today.

Change me from the inside out, Lord.

<>< Katie

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