Monday, November 28, 2011

Stainless

Isaiah 1:18
"Come now, let us settle the matter," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool."

I love turtleneck sweaters. I have them in several colors. They are the mainstay of my winter wardrobe.

The one I wear the least, however, is my white one. Don't get me wrong. I like it just as much as the others. It's just whenever I wear something white, I know the Stain Demon is lurking right around the corner.

I wear white with caution. With trepidation. With fear and trembling.

The arsenal of the Stain Demon is formidable.

Ink. Ketchup. Mustard. Spaghetti sauce. Salad dressing. Grape juice. Cherry pie. Hot chocolate. Coffee. Red wine.

He's biding his time, holding out for the right moment to trip me up on just one of these. Or, maybe others I've yet to imagine.

Wait for it . . . Wait for it . . .

Wham!

Dang! Not coffee again!

I race for the laundry room. Grabbing the Spray 'N Wash, I triage the stain as fast as possible, hoping against hope to restore the sweater to its former, pristine self.

When it emerges from the wash, I hold my breath. Painstakingly, I open it to inspect the place where the spot was. Where I pray it isn't anymore.

There.

Ever so faint, the barest egg-shell on white.

Stain Demon: Eleventy-million. Me: Zero.

~

Our sins are like the coffee stain on my white sweater. We can try and try to erase them, to wash them away. But, we can't.

Only Jesus can wash away our sins. Only He can forgive. Only He can make us as white and pure as the driven snow.

Only He . . .

Is there a stain on your heart that only the Lord can remove?

Let us pray:
Sometimes, Father, we think we can do it all by ourselves. Remind us that it is in You where we live, breathe, and have our being. Take our sins, Lord, and create a clean heart and unblemished spirit within us. Amen.

Readings
Psalms 1, 2, 3 or 4, 7
Isaiah 1:10-20
1 Thessalonians 1:1-10
Luke 20:1-8

13 comments:

  1. Sometimes those stains are there as a reminder of how we have grown from it... or learn't from it... not necessarily to be erased.

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  2. Agree with Savira. Nice post. I too love white.

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  3. Hi, Savira and Janu! Thanks for stopping by today.
    Oh, I agree, we definitely learn from our mistakes, those stains we make in life along our journey. I take comfort in knowing that my Savior is patient with my growth and forgives the bad moves I've made along the way.
    Blessings to you both!

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  4. How simply you have put forward such a powerful message Martha....God gives us several chances to remove "stains" from our lives...I loved your post.

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  5. I just spilled coffee on one of my shirts yesterday, so I could relate to this post! ;) It is true, though, God's love has the power to heal and restore us, wiping all of our stains away. I believe it's essential to seek within ourselves for this process to begin. God is waiting in the temple of our hearts...all we need to do is knock at its door.

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  6. Stains leave a mark and fade with time. Some are welcome some scrubbed till the fabric tears. Great post.

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  7. Hi, Alpana and Jessica! Thanks for reading and commenting today.:)
    @Alpana - Thank you for the wonderful compliment on the post. Aren't you so glad God gives us more than one chance at stain removal? He is good, all the time!
    @Jessica - How coincidental re your coffee spill yesterday. Yes, I agree, the process begins within us: "Knock, and the door shall be opened unto you." He is waiting for our invitation to come in.
    Blessings to you both!

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  8. Hi, Sulekkha! Thanks for stopping by!
    I have memories of trying to scrub stains from favorite clothing and hoping I wouldn't tear it. At best, the scrubbing would leave the fabric mottled. :(
    So glad God can remove my stains for me!
    Blessings to you!

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  9. that's what the DEC 25 is all about doing the wash and getting out the stains. god bless

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  10. I scrub up good in the wash, i have a few stains, but they haven't tarnished me, instead put me on the right track on my journey. Perhaps we have to make a few mistakes before we know that we are heading in the right direction. I wore my favourite white shirt on saturday, it did enjoy my spare ribs. Its undergoing heavy duty washing as we speak.

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  11. Hi, Roy and Larry! Thanks so much for stopping by today.
    @Roy - Yes! We celebrate the One coming into the world who can remove every stain and blemish. Praise God!
    @Larry - LOL! I didn't think to write BBQ stain and surely should have included this. We can always learn from our "stains" and get back on track. Isn't that wonderful?
    Glad to know that you clean up well :); hope your shirt does the same!
    Blessings to you both!

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  12. Excellent post: witty and charming ;-)
    Please pardon my sense of humor in the video.
    I recommend that Steve Martin be your new dry cleaner ;-)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHET3wrCnuw

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  13. Thanks so much, Debra! I'll be sure to check this out. A good laugh never hurts. :)
    Blessings!

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Pray!

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ...