Sometimes I’m not as thorough as I should be when cleaning house. I might miss getting into the corners when I sweep or leave the dust bunnies under the sofa. When dusting I don’t always get to the places that are the hardest to reach. Eventually those places that I don’t pay as much attention to require even more attention. When they get to the point that they can no longer be ignored I fuss because they are now much more difficult to take care of. If only I’d done it right all along it wouldn’t be a problem.
I’m the same way when doing yard work. When weeding, the big obvious ones get pulled but the small ones down close to the ground sometimes get left alone. After all, they’re small and you can’t really see them. Of course the next time I weed those small ones are the big ones and there are many more small ones to deal with. Again, if I’d done it right the first time it would be much easier to keep up with.
Cleaning our spiritual house is much the same. We see the big problems but sometimes overlook the little things. If we’ve told lies we ask forgiveness. But if we complained under our breath at the driver who cut us off I think we sometimes feel that was justified and therefore not a problem. Just as when sweeping or weeding, those small things become big things. The under the breath yelling at the other driver becomes vocal and maybe accompanied by inappropriate hand signals.
The small things are the playground of Satan. The bit of peevishness we show toward our spouse or children can become more bitter and nastier. The speck of dust left in the corner of our soul becomes infested with the spiders of sin spawned by the evil one. That tiny little weed of apathy left in the flower bed may grow and smother out the beautiful rose bush of love and joy.
Just as our house needs a thorough cleaning and our garden a thorough weeding, so too our soul. If we want the Lord to live within us we must provide Him with a proper dwelling.
”Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord; though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.” (Isaiah 1: 18)