When The Laundry Preaches a Sermon

photo credit: AlicePopkorn washday ~ Waschtag ~ via photopin (license)

But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 1 John 1:7

Life isn’t all about laundry.

Think about that statement for a minute. Say it out loud. Let it roll across your lips as you stand surveying the piles of unsorted colors and whites surrounding you.

But, sometimes it feels like life is exactly  one endless laundry marathon, doesn’t it?

Do you pride yourself, on perfectly folded piles, the strongest stain removers, and socks that match themselves? Or are you of the organic laundering movement?  Or maybe, just maybe, you are the one feeling cornered by the laundry basket and currently curled fetal position on the laundry room floor wondering if there is anything more to life than laundry.

The laundry is weighing you down, so to speak.

This laundry and the weight of keeping up with the endless sorting, washing, drying, hanging, folding, delivering. You think you’re catching a break, but while you sleep , like a rabbit in spring, it’s multiplying.

Then there’s the special care, the linen. Those hard to clean pieces, the bonus  laundry you didn’t plan on- flu season is upon us. Don’t get me started on the possibility of any variety of “critter” that might find its way into your home via the pet or elementary aged kiddo.

Let’s face it, laundry can feel like a life sentence.


It reminds me of The Temple God had the Israelites initiate. The sacrifices were continual and specific. If you were a Jew there was no escaping the maintaining of the Temple and all that went on surrounding the many obligatory appointed days for feasts, worship, and celebrations throughout the year.

So many requirements. So continual. No escaping the duty of it, nor the details. Details sometimes can trip us up…cause us to lose sight of hope. Cause us to forget the gift of simple things.

The Temple was a bloody place, a place of sacrifice and details. A place in need of continual cleaning. From the priest’s garments to the instruments used in slaughter. From curtains to rods.

But, in the midst of the Temple, God with His people, a continual glory.

Is God in the laundry? I’m not sure…but He is with His people.

And the glorious, beautiful wonderful truth you need to see from under your avalanche  of looming fruits is the hope beyond unmatched socks, ground in dirt stains and the latest, greatest Tide pods.

Because looming larger than those Fruit of the Looms, is a hope beyond laundry duty. A hope that springs eternal . And though that laundry seems like it is eternal…friend, laundry is just a seven letter word  that begs to be clean. The needed reminder of our inability to be clean…apart from a cleaning agent.  Let your laundry preach to you.

Because  clean, is what we all need. But, clean is not a state we gravitate towards, nor can we maintain, without a little help. Scratch that, a lot of help. We can’t even clean ourselves apart from a cleaning agent.

As in One who turns us inside out, applies Himself to our sin, and makes us holy and clean.

This Agent can’t be bought at the market, or Dollar Store.  Doesn’t come in a variety of combinations either.  But clean is what we get from this Cleaning Agent. I’m telling you, life isn’t all about laundry, but laundry can sure teach you a lesson about life. Because we don’t have dirty laundry. We are dirty laundry!

We need cleaning continuously. We need continuous care, and often special care. We may be washed, dried, folded, put away today, but tomorrow we will be worn, weary and worried- we’ll need a cleaning agent and someone to fluff us up nice and new. We’ll need to smell good instead of the stink that will be on us from living out our daily duties in real time. We’ll need stain removal for our unbecoming attitudes and thoughts towards others- and ourselves.

Laundry may be wearisome, but a life apart from cleanliness is a death sentence for clothes. Same for us. Without the Cleaning Agent which makes us clean, we remain filthy. Oh, we can maintain the facade of cleanliness for awhile, but soon the stains of daily living will show, and soil will break down our soul.

You know, laundry can’t clean itself. It waits to be tended to. How can we tend to ourselves as laundry? By presenting ourselves to the  One who will clean us, and leave us in the state He desires: Holy and Clean. He softens us by His Spirit, rinses us anew and delivers us from that which would be detrimental to our well being.

So, if you feel bowled over by those fruity looms in your laundry and need encouragement more than a fabulous fabric softener, call on the Cleaning Agent, and let your laundry preach to you while you ski those mountain sized moguls of towels and sheets. Take some time between loads to take a load off, and allow the Savior to tend to your stains. I’m confident He will have you sparkling in no time!

Published by enthusiasticallydawn

Dawn Paoletta is the author of Journaling for Discovery and Delight. Her writing is included in several anthologies and her poems have been included in the Wickford Poetry and Art Exhibit and Books. Dawn is currently working on her next book. Inquiries at dawn.paoletta@gmail.com

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