There are two kinds of people in the world: the ones that keep an immaculate garage and the ones (like me) that don’t. My father-in-law happens to be one of those keepers of a spotless garage. I remember visiting his home in Florida during college and being awestruck at how clean he kept his garage floors.
It dawned on me the other day that the only times I really feel compelled to organize my garage and actually sweep out the floor happen to coincide with impending visits from my in-laws. Twice a year, my garage looks immaculate just in time for my father-in-law to pull into the driveway. And so it was this past weekend.
I realized something beneficial about a clean garage floor over the holiday weekend; I think my father-in-law had explained this to me in my early twenties, but I didn’t have a garage at the time and did not pay much attention. A clean garage floor keeps the floors in your home clean. I noticed the past couple of days that the floors in my house stayed relatively spotless.
A good deal of the dirt that we clean from the floors inside our home is tracked in by the kids and the dog from the dirty garage floor outside my home.
I have been writing lately about the spiritual disciplines.
It occurred to me that there are some real similarities between prayer, reading the Bible, meditation — and yes, keeping a clean garage floor.
When I begin my day in prayer, it can effectively “sweep away” selfishness, bitterness, jealousy — the dirt that circulates around my life and gathers on my “garage floor” looking for a way into my heart.
The spiritual disciplines can be profoundly transformative.
Maybe one of the practical benefits of faithfully practicing the disciplines is that they simply help keep us from tracking so much “dirt” into our hearts.