Yes, sweep. As in the floor.
I’m in the stage of motherhood in which lots of crumbs are produced. I sweep at least part of my kitchen at least one time every day. There are times I’ve swept as many as four times in a day. Have you been there?
I swept after snack this afternoon. Yesterday I swept before I mopped. The day before, I swept twice since Jacob mowed and tracked grass in and, well you get the picture.
There are several reasons I sweep daily. I don’t like seeing crumbs or feeling them under my feet, or maybe someone spilled something or tracked something in. Looming in my mind, however, is that this time of year I have to be pro-active about clearing away crumbs before ants find them. I really. Don’t. Like. Ants.
I was thinking about the daily-ness of sweeping and “daily” lingered in my head. My mind was taken to a verse I memorized years ago when I went through a Bible study called Experiencing God. In Luke 9:23, Jesus says, “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me.” (NASB, emphasis mine)
Just as I am diligent to sweep every day, I need to be diligent to deny myself, take up my cross, and follow Jesus daily. To deny myself, I have to kill my pride; that human side of me that creeps in and wants to be the one in control. I have to take up my cross daily. To take up my cross is to choose to die. Paul said it this way in Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.” (NASB) I have to do this daily because every day, multiple times a day, I try to take control back from God. If I am going to follow God, I have to let him lead.
It would not work if our 8 year old got in our van and began to give me directions on where I should drive her according to her agenda. She doesn’t know how to drive and she is like me at that age in that whenever we are going somewhere her nose is in a book. I am not sure that she would know how to give directions. Beyond all of this, though, she isn’t in charge. She doesn’t set the agenda, I do. If she is going to ride with me, she has to follow my lead.
So often, though, that’s how we address God – as if we lead and He follows granting wishes like a genie. Who are we to think that we can set an agenda and expect God to get us there? Luke 9:23 reminds us that we deny ourselves daily. We take up our crosses daily. We follow Him daily.
When we are dying to self daily, we become more sensitive to the leadership of the Holy Spirit and we don’t like the feeling of things coming between us and God so we repent of those things. Things that spill into our lives, the sin-dirt that we track in is easily identified and dealt with. We also become pro-active about dealing with sin before it takes root and becomes a bigger problem.
Just like sweeping, it has to be a daily activity, sometimes several times a day.
So, have you swept today 😉?