June 12, 2019
By Jennifer Davis Rash
President and Editor-in-Chief
If you want a house that stays clean and orderly at all times then invite people over a lot — that’s the advice a friend said her mom taught her.
We tend to step up in our ability to clean, pick up and straighten up when guests are on the way.
And we are more relaxed in letting a few things go when we aren’t expecting anyone to visit.
Preparing for guests is on my mind because we recently intensified our cleaning efforts at The Alabama Baptist building as we anticipated many friends coming to Birmingham for the Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting.
We put careful thought into exactly what needed to be done to make the office sparkle and then worked toward that goal.
While a few things on the list had to wait because of timing, we did take care of several items that needed to be done. Our team did a fantastic job assessing all aspects of the building inside and out and worked hard to put everything possible in order.
The “getting ready for guests” exercise also helped us dream a little about future projects that would enhance the spaces in which a good number of us spend many hours a day.
It’s always fun for me to see the transformation of a room, house or office after some serious decluttering and cleaning. And I love how it seems so much easier to keep a room clean for the first few days after a major scrubbing.
But the minute we choose to wait on the dishes or laundry, leave the bed unmade or pile random items on the kitchen counter it is hard not to automatically move into messy mode. It doesn’t seem to bother us as much to let the mess grow once one exists.
The same is true with repairs. We will put up with broken or missing parts when it’s only ourselves who are impacted but we will make the effort on the repairs when guests will be using whatever it is that is broken.
So it does seem that making sure we are constantly entertaining guests would ensure a more orderly and pristine home or office as my friend’s mom says.
We could apply the same line of thinking to our cars and other physical spaces. But what about our spiritual lives? Would the same concept work there?
I’m thinking God as the primary and constant guest.
When we are thinking about God, talking to God and inviting Him into our life moments, then our minds will naturally be more orderly and less cluttered. We will desire for all parts of our lives to be clean and polished. We will work to repair the broken parts and stay attuned to what is needed to keep each part working correctly.
If we are functioning properly and maintaining a more pristine inner temple then we are able to shine brighter for the Lord and be more effective as we share Him with others.
We are able to observe those around us more clearly because the clutter in our own lives has been cleared.
We also develop personally because more time with God leads to growing in Him.