Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Dirty Fridge Blues

Today I did something remarkable: I cleaned out the refrigerator! I am sort of ashamed to even admit this, but this is the first time I have really cleaned it out since we moved into this house - a year and a half ago! Now, don't misunderstand me, I've cleaned out old food and stuff, and even sprayed and wiped down the shelves, but today I actually took all the shelves and drawers out, washed them, washed out all the inside of the fridge, and put the shelves and drawers back in, which I hadn't done yet.

I had been putting off and putting off this task for a long time now. I just hate doing it (almost as much as I hate cleaning the stove-top). It's one of those things that I think about when I open the fridge door and see that it needs to be cleaned, but then I forget about it 2 minutes after I close the door.

At some point in the past 18 months, someone had spilled red Kool-Aid into the bottom of the fridge, something that looked suspiciously like some form of sticky candy was stuck on one of the shelves, and there was something that looked like strange red-dyed rock hard noodles (I have no idea what it was originally) stuck in a drawer.

I opened that refrigerator door, and I looked in at that mess that I had been avoiding for months, and I dreaded the job before me. I unloaded the food from the shelves, wrestled the shelves and drawers out of the fridge, and ran myself a sink full of hot, soapy water. I scrubbed shelves and drawers to sparkling clean clearness. I scrubbed down the inside of the fridge, working extra hard on that frozen pool of red stickiness in the bottom. I put the drawers and shelves back in place. I loaded them back up with well-organized food.

I looked at the clock.

It had taken me "all" of 15 minutes.

Wait a minute? Seriously? Just 15 minutes?

That job I had been avoiding like the plague (which, I'm afraid, if I hadn't gotten it done before too much longer, may have caused the plague) took me all of 15 minutes. And I didn't even really have to scrub hard!

Ah, God, how like the dirty refrigerator my life can be sometimes. I'm full of messes, sticky, gross, sometimes even dangerous and unhealthy. I know I have all these things inside me, I know they need to be cleaned out, and that I need to be made clean and new again. I think about these things when I'm at church or when I read a good Bible study, and I know I need to deal with them, but I get so caught up in the busyness of daily life and I forget.

How amazing God is that what seems so daunting and dreadful a task to me is so very easy to him. When I empty out the old "food" of my life and give him full access to all my little hiding places, all he needs is a little bit of time and the cleansing suds of the Holy Spirit within me, and voila! I'm sparkling new again.

God, inspire me on a regular basis to clean out all the old garbage and let you do your work in me...hopefully before I get to plague status!

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