Cleaning and Cleansing
I have always puzzled over Jesus’ words. “When an unclean spirit comes out of a man, it passes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ On its return, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and brings seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they go in and dwell there. And the final plight of that man is worse than the first” (Luke 11:24-26).
Better not to clean your room then! I wonder how many kids have used this argument against their parents.
I remember when I was younger, my living room would be a mess. My mother, tired of nagging us, would give up and let things be as they were. However, there would often times be a frenzy if someone were to be coming over. Then we would bring out the mop and clean out all the possible places our guest would visit.
Deep down, our motives were nothing special. We didn’t want to look bad, and so we did our best to clean up as much as we could. Furthermore, I was always amazed at how messy the house would become shortly thereafter.
My reason for keeping the house clean was gone, and I no longer had a good enough reason to keep things in order.
Advent is known as a time of preparation for the Coming of the Lord. As Christians we celebrate the birth of He who would clean and cleanse this lowly world.
It is also a time of “cleaning your house.” We prepare ourselves for Him. We wait for him. We put our lives in order for Him. Thus, when all the spirits return from all their meanderings, they will find a place that is full of Love. Not only that, they will find a home where Jesus is present, there at the center.