Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Cleaning in the Dark

Have you ever tried to clean a room in the dark? Imagine trying to dust shelves, move knick-knacks, wash windows and vacuum in the dark. Even if we had minimal light it would be hard to see clearly enough to really make our house shine.

But what happens when the light is brought in and we see the effects of our cleaning in the dark? We would see how much of it was done in vain because we had missed a fair amount of the dirt. We would see streaks on the window, patches of dust still layering shelves, and probably a fair amount of stuff on the floor that we just didn't pass over with the vacuum.

On the other hand, how well could we clean a room if it was bathed in light? We would be able to see every speck of dust or fragment on the carpet. We would be able to make our windows transparent and feel the satisfaction of knowing that our house is clean and presentable to anyone who might visit. It would bring a sense of peace to have an orderly home.

I think that if we approach our lives as if we were cleaning in the dark we're going to see similar dismal results. When we attempt to live our lives in the dark we struggle in vain to rid ourselves of sin and weaknesses. On the other hand, if we are willing to let in light we can change the entire appearance and order of our lives. Jesus Christ is our light and a shining beacon of hope in this world. Without His guidance and the clarity that He brings to our situation we are lost in the dark, stumbling around and trying to clean up our messes without being able to even see them clearly. The more of His light we have in our lives, the better we'll be able to see those streaks that still need to be wiped clean. And the most amazing part is that as we let His light into our lives, He is willing to come right in and help with the cleaning effort. In fact, He does the lion's share of the work!

So which room would you rather invite the Savior into? I think it would be far easier to open the door to Jesus if we knew we had prepared for His visit by making our home as clean and comfortable as possible. But if our "homes" are messy or filthy we shouldn't hide in the dark and wish things were better. We need to let in the Light and let Him help us to beautify and organize our "homes." And once we've let the Light in, we need to keep up with our weekly routines of cleaning. We need to be at church to take the sacrament and renew our covenants. We need to serve others and follow His example. As we do these things we will find that Jesus is right there with us, not only lighting our way, but also holding our hand and guiding us. He has the power to take away any dirt or messiness in our lives if we let Him. If we open our lives to His light He will help us become the shining spirits we were always meant to be.


Erin said...

I'm grateful that inspite of my weakness and inability to keep things as clean as I like, he's still willing to come in and help me tackle those hard-to-reach areas. Grace is a pretty-darn cool thing!

Mama D said...

I love this analogy! It's amazing the amount of dirt He is willing to clean up as He helps us become better people.

Papa D said...

This is a perfect example of why I love your spirit, Patty. What a beautiful analogy!

chelle said...

I started reading my scriptures again this week after a LONG (about a year) break in the habit. I have never been a really great scripture reader. I have started and stopped a millions times over.
I have felt his light in my life still....but through blinds or shear curtains instead of having the window open and squeaky clean.
Thanks for the thoughts and reminder to always keep myself and my family in Hi light.
I am not even going to think about how dirty my house is is the light AND darkness lol.