Thursday, November 5, 2009

Vacuuming with Sunglasses

Several years ago I was chatting with a friend of mine. This friend had taken her two sons, ages eight and ten, to see a Christian rock concert the night before. We were talking about the concert when the eight year old said dreamily, "Mom, after that concert, I feel like my soul was just vacuumed!" It was an odd way of saying it, but I think we all knew exactly what he meant! I suppose there have been those times in my life when I have felt completely clean, as if all the sin and evil and error have been sucked right out of me; not because of anything I had done, but entirely because God had acted powerfully in that moment. Those times don't seem to endure, but they do feel good, like a fresh start in life. From there on, you want to do better, to be a better person, to keep the soul clean and sparkling. But it doesn't take long for that first stain to ruin everything, and all the old habits and shabbiness seep back in. At least, that's the way it has been for me.

As I was vacuuming under my piano the other day, I recalled my friend's eight year old and his experience of the concert. I also thought about another odd vacuuming experience from a few years back. Once when we were having trouble keeping the cleaning staff at the church, we had a temp employee filling in. He was there to clean the church for Sunday services and one of his duties was to vacuum the area rugs in the sanctuary. I happened to walk through as he was vacuuming, and I noticed he had sunglasses on! The first thing I thought was that he wanted to hide that he was high or had partied too much the night before. Who knows? It was rather amusing, but we made sure that this particular worker was not invited back. Since he couldn't possibly see the dirt and dust through those glasses, it is hard to imagine that the quality of his cleaning was very good.

So who is running the vacuum cleaner in your soul? I suppose we all try to vacuum out those soul corners from time to time. Maybe we vacuum when we are reminded of our short comings and transgressions. Perhaps we vacuum when we find ourselves in the presence of a person with integrity. Maybe we only vacuum when we get caught with dirt on our souls, and then it's really not vacuuming at all, it's only pretending in order to look good. When we vacuum, do we keep those sunglasses on? Sometimes I suppose I really don't want to know what the dusty corners of my soul look like. If I can't see the dirt, is it really there? Nobody else can see it, right?!

Would I dare to put the vacuum in the hands of someone else? That would have to be someone I deeply trusted to love me even though those soul corners are truly a mess. There are a few of those people in my life - the ones who know me a little too well for my own comfort, and deep down, I know I need those people. But I must admit I wouldn't want too many of those folks in my life. That would require way too much vulnerability. No thanks. I'll run that vacuum myself most of the time.

And then there's God. God has a deluxe, heavy duty, industrial strength, super-sized vacuum cleaner. Watch out for that One... the dust in the corners of the soul doesn't stand a chance. Let God in with that vacuum, and you'll be spick and span in no time. We would not only look clean, but we would feel clean and smell clean. We would have a fresh start, a clean slate, a new life.

It sounds to me like having your soul vacuumed at a rock concert might be the way to go. With a little entertainment to go with the cleaning, it might be less conscious and less painful. That's where the sun glasses come in. We really don't want to see the dirt - and a little entertainment to make the medicine go down does make it easier. That probably works well for self aware eight year olds. Well, I don't know about you, but it's a long time since I was eight years old, and I choose adult consciousness when it comes to the spiritual journey. When the journey requires that those dusty corners be vacuumed, I'd rather take off the sunglasses and get the place as clean as I can. Better yet, invite God with that deluxe, heavy duty, industrial strength, super-sized vacuum cleaner to do the job, and life is truly made new.

1 comment:

  1. Sunglasses could have a different purpose as well, not only to block out the true mirror of the soul. At the moment when person overcharged with energy, the beam from the eyes could be painful for those with different polarity. At this time, if person doesn't know the way how to control own energy in a positive way, person could be frightened of how world around interacts, so glasses could reduce the energy coming out of eyes and put the sight into a frame making it's easier to focus on certain objects within the frame. Only when one realized that there is no menace around and remembered true love - he'll be able to interact with the world graciously with love.