Saturday, September 24, 2016

The Dirty Laundry in the Background

I've noticed an odd thing recently. When something the least bit unusual happens, whoever's present says, "You should write a blog about this." As if I can pull a blog post out of the air on any topic imaginable. Maybe it's because I once wrote a story about the toilet paper in the church bathroom. Anyway...

One of the things that delayed the launch of Sam's Project was that I didn't have a good photo of Sam to put on the project page. Rory (our VP of Marketing) emailed me (again) to say he needed a photo, so I pulled one up on my phone and sent it to him. 

After I hit send, I realized that I'd taken the photo with an unsightly background. I rushed to Rory's office, which doesn't take much rushing, since he's just next door.

"You need to photoshop my dirty laundry out of this picture before you put it up."

Rory looked up with the most mischievous grin and said, "I don't think my photoshop skills extend to dirty laundry." 

It was something Ryan Hollis (my son) would've said. I knew how much success I'd have had with Ryan over something like this, since he once named a piece of pottery that was for sale on my website "elephant booger". It was on the website for weeks before I noticed it. 

I was doubtful I could sway Rory, but I had to try one more time. "Please, take the dirty laundry out before you post that photo."

"Nah. You should just write a blog about airing your dirty laundry." He laughed. Guys think this kind of thing is much funnier than I do. 

The photo stayed. 

The dirty laundry on the floor in the background stayed. 

In my defense, I was doing laundry when Sam arrived with his new Hope Church t-shirt. I stopped to take a photo and never noticed the pile of towels waiting to go in the washer in the background.

As I've thought about dirty laundry, I've realized my problem is not usually airing mine in public. The problem I'm more likely to have is to let my emotional "dirty laundry" (aka sinful attitudes) pile up in the background of my life and leave it there. Untouched. Unaddressed. 

To people who know me well, it may be evident on close inspection that there's something wrong. That a little "clean up" is needed.

So it is when we harbor ungodly attitudes. Judgmental, critical spirits. Anger. Bitterness. Unforgiveness. They're always in the background, marring the picture we present to the world. 

If we want a "clean" background in a photo, we need to deal with the dirty towels on the floor. If we want to present a "clean" image to the world, we need to deal with the "dirty laundry" of attitudes and sin that interfere with the picture of Christ we're supposed to present.

Let's stop for a moment and consider our own lives. Is there something in the background of our lives that mars the image of Christ? Why not deal with it now? Let's show the world a clear picture of the Christ we say we serve, not distract them by our sin.

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." 1 John 1:9 esv
In case you missed the story of Sam's project, here's the link: Sam's Project: Rubber Boots for Barefoot Rwandan Children
If you'd like to give to help buy boots for the barefoot school children of Rwandan, you can go directly to the project page here: Help Sam's Kids
In case you missed it, here's the link to yesterday's post: Three Years and 1550 blogs Later...
#dirtylaundry #sin