As you saw in yesterday’s post, Peanuts Grandmother made her a white dress for her baptism. It is BEAUTIFUL. Lace and beads. When we were visiting them this summer they planned the dress together. When Bubush came for Meatloaf’s birth she fitted it to Peanut. My mother is amazing and talented. I look at the stuff she makes for the kids and try to figure out what it would cost in the real world.
Peanut loves the dress, so she wants to wear it every Sunday. One Sunday, right after her baptism she was all dressed and ready. She decided that she would give a gift to her primary teacher. She got it and then decided to wrap it. For some reason she decided that the carbon paper she had been playing with the day before would make a GREAT wrapping. Apparently she had completely forgotten what I had told her about how messy carbon paper is.
She came downstairs just as we were about to walk out the door with a little package in her hand, leaning against the lace at her waistline.
I then expressed my surprise and dismay. There was a black mark across her dress. I told her to put the package down and go wash her hands. She dropped the package and walked into the bathroom. A few seconds later she walks out with a washcloth she is dabbing at her dress, and black hand prints all over the dress. I loudly told her “Stop! Stop touching your dress!” She put her hands up like someone in a stickup. I asked her “Why didn’t you wash your hands?”
Her reply “I thought the dress was more important then my hands!”
What do you say to that?
I switched her into a different dress and spent the car ride to church trying to explain to her how that had been a REALLY bad idea until Husband made me stop.
When we got home I cleaned all I could from it. There were still a few black marks I could not get off by blotting with water. I called a friend of mine who owns a dry cleaning business. I asked him what to do and he recommended a cleaner. I bought it and it got the rest out. Any shadows that were left washed out when I rinsed the cleaner out of the dress.
The next Sunday Peanut wanted to wear the dress again. When we left church we walked through the grass. Apparently it was wet enough that Peanut kicked mud up the back of the dress.
Out came the cleaner again and the dress was white once more.
While I was thinking about these events I realized that it’s a good analogy for sin and repentance.
Our souls are white, clean and beautiful. We mess up some things we can wash out ourselves, some things we can’t, we have to consult and expert. With the experts help we can get clean again. And we turn around and sin again. But the expert is there to help us and we can be perfectly clean again.
That’s life, and repentance is part of it. An ongoing part of it. Once won’t be enough, we will have to turn to the Lord for His expert help over and over. But as long as we do, we can be white and clean again.
Peanut wore the dress to church the next Sunday, it’s still clean.