Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Coming Clean

Many of you are probably too young to remember the TV commercials for laundry detergent where women in flowered cotton dresses are hanging out their laundry on a sunny morning. But, the cheerful, rosy faces hid an ugly, dirty truth. Those women were ruthlessly scrutinizing the laundry of their neighbours. Were their neighbours' whites dazzling? Or did telltale stains and dinginess betray the other homemakers' carelessness? A glance at one's own sparkling and unsullied clothes brought immense satisfaction and even sanctimoniousness. After all, cleanliness is next to godliness.

I have to admit I love hanging clothes out on the line! I often didn't have neighbours in my clothesline days, so I couldn't compare my laundry to others, but I do have definite clothesline snobbery. There is a precise order in which clothes are to be hung. A proper placement for every clothespin.

I also LOVE to do laundry. But that's another story.

There is a story circulating that bears repeating. It makes the point I am getting at. (I do have a point.)
A couple moved into a new neighborhood. The first morning, while they are eating breakfast, the woman saw the neighbor hanging up the wash outside.

"That laundry is not very clean," she said. "She doesn't know how to wash correctly. Perhaps she needs another laundry soap."

The husband looked on, but remained silent.

Every time her neighbour would hang out the wash, the  woman would make the same comment.

About a month later, the woman was surprised to see nice clean wash on the line and said to her husband,

"Look! She has learned how to wash correctly. I wonder who taught her this?"

Her husband said, "I got up early this morning and washed our windows."
Many of us would immediately think of Matthew 7: 3. "Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?" (NIV) I think this little story explains the verse well, but also takes it to another level. The poor neighbour lady was being judged for something she was not guilty of--her laundry WAS perfectly spotless. The criticizing woman was looking through the dirty lens of her own faults.

I said I'd never do this, go all preachy and philosophical on my readers. A little of the latter is okay, the former, not at all. So, with no further explanation, I'll leave it there for you to ponder.


  1. Flippin' awesome, Ann!

  2. Ann, I like the preachy philosophical side of you! Bring it! So true, we often judge through tainted glasses and not in love.

    I will not judge you, but HOW do you love laundry? It seems to be the bane of my existence...though, not quite as bad as when the house was full of kids who liked to change clothes three times a day, lol.

    Looking forward to more!

  3. Maybe I'll tell my love for laundry story someday, Lyn. Nothing philosophical about it, though. Or preachy.

  4. Love this blog post. Laundry? Only sometimes.


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