Today had an interesting start ... had to clean up some cat poop on our sofa! Some critical questions here ... how did the cat get in the house? why did the cat think the sofa was an appropriate place? why is that smell still with me now 4 hours later? Regardless, the sofa required some cleaning but it's all taken care of now.
Yesterday involved some cleaning as well. Due to the cold I picked up a rather heavy coat that I was going to wear but noticed it was dirty and smelled bad. To be honest that wasn't the first time I noticed this about the coat but I had routinely just ignored it because I didn't want the inconvenience and expense of taking it to the cleaners. Not sure why, maybe it was by mistake or perhaps a move of God's Spirit, but I actually thought to look at the label on the coat. And, of course, it read "machine wash - tumble dry." I had longed assumed this coat required some sort of complex dry cleaning, that there was no way it could be sufficiently cleaned by just throwing it in the washer. I was wrong, so I washed it and now it looks and smells great!
Often I neglect to read the label about what's involved in cleansing for my heart. By default I assume that a lengthy, expensive, difficult, complex process is involved and perhaps, if I do everything just right, my heart may be okay. But in reality the label actually says, "repent - believe." This very simple process of acknowledging my sin to God and turning once again to the cross of Jesus Christ to find complete forgiveness is absolutely sufficient for daily cleansing. Too often I think of the Gospel as merely an additive I must add to my efforts to scrub myself clean. But the truth is that the Gospel is the whole deal that cleans and restores my heart. Of course, I must do this every day ... several times a day ... due to the extensive and continual sin in my life. But each time I do it, the cross is sufficient.
Have you been waiting to take your life somewhere to get it cleaned from the noticeable dirt, stain, smell, and filth of sin? Here's the good news ... right now, take just a moment to own up to your sin and run with it to the cross. There you will find forgiveness, cleansing, purification, and the fresh aroma of God's love and grace being poured over you.