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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Wash Day

It was “Wash Day.” Elise got right to work separating the laundry into piles. She loaded the washer, reached for the cleaning agents, and meticulously measured the bleach, detergent, and fabric softener, pouring each into their respective receptacles.

Elise hit the start button. 

As soon as she glanced at the remaining piles, she realized she had made a terrible mistake. The white clothes were still on the floor. 

“No!” Elise exclaimed, jamming the stop-cycle button. 

She removed her permanent-press clothing and replaced them with whites. She was relieved she had retrieved her business attire before the bleach had dispensed. 

“Why did I do that?” she said. Elise quickly answered her own question, “It is because I was just going through the motions.” Doing laundry wasn’t something Elise prioritized; rather, it was a chore she did because it was necessary. She didn’t mind the routine of Wash Day, but she didn’t value it.

Elise poured coffee, sat, and opened her Bible. She read about Mary of Bethany who had been going through the motions of religion until Jesus rescued her from a life of sin. Now, Mary offered Jesus her most precious gift—an alabaster box with anointing perfume, which was her dowry. As she did so, her tears fell upon her Master's feet, which she wiped clean with her hair. No longer was Mary content to go through the motions of lifeless religion; rather, she was devoted to Jesus with every ounce of her being. 

“She hath washed my feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head.” Luke 7:44b KJV

Mary loved Jesus! She would follow Him even to the cross. Mary believed Jesus would give His life on the cross, so she anointed Him for burial ahead of time with her best gift—the anointing oil—with the hopes also that He would rise again.

Elise thought about the twelve disciples. All except Judas were devoted. They were willing to give up their livelihoods to follow their master. She felt she must be just as committed to prioritizing her time with Jesus. She thought about others who had invited Jesus into their homes or had in other ways sacrificed to honor Him. These early Christians were devoted. She must do the same.

“Then Peter said, Lo, we have left all, and followed thee.” Luke 18:28 KJV

Elise set her Bible on the stand.

“My Jesus,” she whispered, “am I going through the motions with my religious ways? Am I focusing my attention on You when I read Your Word? Do I have the gratitude of Mary when I sit at Your feet? Remake me, Lord. Help me to recognize You paid the ultimate price—that of death on a cross—in order to forgive me as You did these. The least I can give You is a heart wholly devoted to You. Create in me the heart of a worshiper.”

Gently, almost imperceptive at first, the rain of the Holy Spirit began to descend upon Elise. The washer buzzed, but Elise stayed seated. Why? It was “Wash Day,” and the Lord was answering Elise’s heartfelt prayer. A song of praise and thanksgiving, as well as peace unfettered, saturated Elise’s humble heart. She sang into the evening, and then, stillness permeated her soul. In the silence, Elise felt the empowerment of her Savior as never before.

It was Wash Day, and Elise had become a worshipper.

Lord Jesus, Wash over me with Your love. Reign in my heart each day.

Copyright © 2019 Diane Virginia, used with permission.

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