4 Lessons from a New Washing Machine

Even the Maytag repairman couldn’t find time to fix it. After 22 years our washing machine died. That includes raising three boys and cleaning all the filth they could find. When the machine began to squeal and oil began to leak, we knew the end was near.

Last night we bought a new machine. It’s a Whirlpool Cabrio, 5.0 cubit feet of washing power. (It has a clear top so mindless husbands can watch the action.) As with most machines it’s an easy setup that even a preacher can accomplish. So I had them load it in the truck, drove home and unloaded it into the garage. After a while it was in a running. But along the way I learned a few cool lessons.

You Have to Move Out the Old Before You Can Bring In the New

Before the new machine could take its place and begin working, the old machine had to be taken away. Old habits need to be eliminated as we move toward a purer, more Godly life. This process of removing the old, bad habits is repentance. Twice Jesus said, “…unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3-5). Peter said again when he called people to repent and avoid the eternal punishment that is sure to come (2 Peter 3:9). In Acts 17:30 Paul said that God wants all people to repent.

Repentance is a process. It does not happen instantly. Habits are hard to break and old associations are even harder to rend. I am convinced that only through the power of Jesus Christ can we complete the repentance process. Those who wait to become a Christian until their life is cleaned up may never come to Christ.

There’s A Mess To Cleanup

As we wrestled the old washing machine out of the laundry room we were greeted by a horrendous mess of dirt, oil, grease, dust and trash that had accumulated under the washing machine. It had to be cleaned and my sweet bride did the duty.

Our old lives often leave remnants of dirt and damage behind. We call them consequences. As ugly as they may be they still need to be cleaned. Where possible Christians should seek forgiveness of those offended and restitution where needed. Be reconciled to those you hurt quickly, even before you worship (Matthew 5:23-24).

Even with powerful cleaning some stains will remain. The ravages of drugs and alcohol last forever. Immorality leaves enduring scares too. Let the stains serve as reminders of where you were – not where you are going.

Hook-Up It Up Right

Hookup for a washing machine is pretty simple. Plug it into the electrical outlet. Hook up the hoses. Attach the drain pipe. Go to work. Last night I discovered that my hot and cold water taps were mislabeled! I had carefully attached the cold water line to the blue cold tap. The hot went to the red. When we tried a cold wash we were met with very hot water!

make sure that you plug into the correct source for answers to life’s questions. The world doesn’t have the answers. God does.

Let me say something bold: NEVER TRUST YOUR PREACHER – NOT EVEN ME. I would hope that preachers are devout students of the word who preach and teach only truth. Still, your soul is worth too much to entrust to someone else. Your preacher is not the source of truth. He may pass on truth. He is not the source. Only God is.

Give It Time to Work

After we hooked up our new super-duper washing machine we wanted to see it work. So Bobbi and I stood and watched it go through it’s cycles. Water in. Wash. Agitate. Drain. Rinse, Spin. But it took time. I guess I killed at least an hour watching it run!

God will do great things with your life if you let him. Submit to him and he will draw you closer (James 4:8). Like a talented potter, God will craft us into beings to serve him (Isaiah 64:8). But the change is not instant. Christianity is about growth. We need time to learn. We have to absorb the word. We have to put it into practice. We will struggle through many “cycles” in our spiritual journey. But given time they will all end in a great way in the presence of the Lord.

Four lessons from a washing machine. Can you think of others? Leave your comments below.

8 comments On 4 Lessons from a New Washing Machine

  • I chuckled at these good lessons. Well done! Our washing machine is 25 years old, has undergone a number of revamps. During the last one the technician told us not to get rid of it, since it’s heavy metal and the new ones are all plastic and weak circuitry. Maybe the lesson is, the old is better!
    .-= Randal´s last blog ..Thoughts from reading the Bible =-.

  • Thanks for a great blog.

    I posted this article on my blog.

    Terry Finley

    .-= Terry Finley´s last blog ..4 Lessons from a New Washing Machine =-.

  • This was AMAZING! Thanks Bryant!

  • I basically agree with your practical exhortations in this post, but I do have a question you statement, “Peter said again when he called people to repent and avoid the eternal punishment that is sure to come (1 Peter 3:9). ” First, this verse is totally different, so maybe this was a clerical error.

    But more to the point is that there will be no eternal punishment, not in the traditional view of God torturing billions of people for all eternity, not if what Jesus, originally, had to say about God’s nature is correct!

    I’ve actually written an entire book on this topic–“Hell? No! Why You Can Be Certain There’s No Such Place As Hell,” (for anyone interested, you can get a free ecopy of my book at my website: http://www.thereisnohell.com), but if I may, let me share one of the many points I make in it to explain why.

    If one is willing to look, there’s substantial evidence contained in the gospels to show that Jesus opposed the idea of Hell. For example, in Luke 9:51-56, is a story about his great disappointment with his disciples when they actually suggested imploring God to rain FIRE on a village just because they had rejected him. His response: “You don’t know what spirit is inspiring this kind of talk!” Presumably, it was NOT the Holy Spirit. He went on, trying to explain how he had come to save, heal and relieve suffering, not be the CAUSE of it.

    So it only stands to reason that this same Jesus, who was appalled at the very idea of burning a few people, for a few horrific minutes until they were dead, could never, ever burn BILLIONS of people for an ETERNITY!

    True, there are a few statements that made their way into the copies of copies of copies of the gospel texts which place “Hell” on Jesus’ lips, but these adulterations came along many decades after his death, most likely due to the Church filling up with Greeks who imported their belief in Hades with them when they converted.

    Bear in mind that the historical Protestant doctrine of the inspiration of the Scriptures applies only to the original autographs, not the copies. But sadly, the interpolations that made their way into those copies have provided a convenient excuse for a lot of people to get around following Jesus’ real message.

    • Let me first say thank you for visiting. You were correct, the error in the citation should have been 2 Peter 3:9 and it has been corrected.

      I must say I disagree with your views which are highly unorthodox and, I believe, just plain unscriptural. One the one hand you point to the Lucan passage for proof that Jesus rejected the idea of burning people and then you turn around and argue that the Scriptures are adulterated. You really cannot have it both ways.

      You are corrected that the doctrine of inspiration relates to the autographs. But it doesn’t follow that copies are in error. If a given passage occurs in a wide variety of manuscripts and fragments from a wide variety of locations scattered throughout eons of time and yet read nearly identical to one another then I am happy that it is accurate. To suggest that we cannot know the true Scriptures suggests that God is unable to communicate truth through the centuries.

      You are faced with more problems than just that which is on Jesus’ lips. For his inspired apostles offered the same teachings. If you can demonstrate these validity of these “interpolations” please do. But the fact is Hell is real. The horror of Hell points both to the ugliness of sin and the beauty of God’s grace which saves.

  • @Terry
    Thanks for much for the post and link!

  • Pingback: 7 Links Just for Fun — Preacher's Study ()

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