”Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil,”
Isaiah 1:16, ESV
”Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.”
2 Timothy 2:21
The disabled Christian’s life is seldom boring or mundane. We are challenged in ways that others will never understand. As if normal life wasn’t enough, we’ve got issues that exceed the norms. Perhaps the most basic are areas of hygiene and cleanliness. I once went without a shower for five weeks when I was clinically depressed. (Somehow letting water pelt me seemed too violent of an ordeal.)
We are responsible for not only physical cleanliness but of a mental or an emotional one as well. I think we’d all agree on the essential need to maintain a certain level of physical health, but what can I do to stay mentally together? Are there standards there as well?
A soap dish can keep our hands clean after using the bathroom, but what of our hearts? It would seem to me that certain levels of being truly healthy apply to not just clean hands but a healthy soul as well. Isaiah spoke to his generation and declared they needed a spiritual bath. The people needed to become clean again. ”Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean;”
This is a path of a holy hygiene that we are all on. We are each responsible for keeping our hearts clean before the Lord. One of the principles of being spiritual hygienic is that of separation from things that contaminate or defile. We are to be a distinct people. This is challenging.
Holiness is often misunderstood. It’s rare to find a believer who has something other than a legalistic idea of what it means to be holy. (This is a grievous thing.) We should be holy and loving at the same time. “A pharisee is hard on others and easy on himself, but a spiritual man is easy on others and hard on himself” (A.W. Tozer). It seems that holiness, like hygiene is not ever attained, but only maintained.
“Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you,”
2 Corinthians 6:17
Staying clean and becoming clean should be a realistic pursuit for the broken believer. We are to be sanitary people that can touch others without contaminating them with our personal sin. You were meant to instill holiness to others for God’s glory. The Holy Spirit can do this.
“Let it be your business every day, in the secrecy of the inner chamber, to meet the holy God. You will be repaid for the trouble it may cost you. The reward will be sure and rich.”