I’ve always thought an annual pass to the car wash would be a great birthday present. Then every week I could get my truck washed! Recently however I pulled the truck in the garage and washed the interior windows, wiped down the dash, and removed the floor mats and vacuumed the carpet. Wow! That makes a huge difference! Which do you prefer, washing your cars exterior or detailing the interior?
I was told police officers can serve with great integrity for many years, and then all of a sudden do something totally out of character that affects their professional future. They think the high levels of grief officers carry can eventually lead to bad choices. Many local police departments offer grief training for their officers to process and manage the grief that comes with their profession.
We see the same thing with pastors. Someone can serve faithfully for 20 years and then find themselves facing the consequences of choices entirely out of character for them. Did the hidden griefs lead to changes in their choices?
Matthew 23:27 says, ““Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones and all uncleanness.” I think dead people’s bones can refer to grief, mortality, our sinful nature, etc. Believers and non believers alike struggle with these internal enemies.
Is it possible that going to church or even serving the church is like going to a car wash? We put on our best clothes and a smile and go through religious “brushes” without ever washing the windows of our souls? Mortality will fill each of us with grief and our sinful nature will war against our minds everyday.. Unfortunately Moses never dealt with his grief and instead blamed it on the Israelites and that cost him greatly. Let’s stop carrying all this grief around and blaming it on others and just clean it out! So let’s pull out our hearts floor mats and vacuum those babies clean!
You may be asking like me, how do we clean out the grief? Well I’m still committed to learning this so here’s Biblical suggustions. Job dealt with grief through silence (Job 2:13). David preferred music (Psalms). Jesus went to solitary places to pray (Lk 5:16). James considered grief pure joy (James 1:2). Paul (Phil4:4-13) and Peter (1 Pe 4:12-13) both tell us to rejoice in all things, even suffering. Rejoicing is thinking, “I’m thriving” and “all is well.” “I’m as good as I can be in the Lord!” I obviously have some work to do when it comes to rejoicing! 😉
So next time you go to a car wash, don’t forget to vacuum under the mats. And the next time you’re in church, don’t forget to clean out under the mats of your hearts and wash the windows of your soul!