“So, do you want the fall colored set or the summer colored set?” I asked as two of our daughters allowed me to shop with them. We were looking at dish towels.
I say “allowed” me because truth be told, NONE of our four children like to shop with me. They say I look at everything in the store – even things I don’t want. I like to look.
Come to think of it, I don’t know anyone who does like to shop with me. Carol says I take too long, Alice Marie says I ask her what she thinks about something, and then after she offers her opinion, I ignor it.
I guess I wouldn’t want to shop with me either.
So, back to our daughters – I was asking them to pick out new dish towels because after staying in each of their homes recently, I noticed that their dish towels looked stained and dirty. Let me be clear – the towels were CLEAN! Yet we all know that after a while, the old dish towel is past the point of looking clean. They look like Chicago Bears uniforms when they play at home after a freeze – muddy and dirty! This is the point at which the old dish towel should begin it’s new life as a rag.
Neither daughter seemed to think that their towels were alll that bad. I assured them that oh, yes, they were and so reluctantly they each picked out a new set. Mission accomplished.
Two days later I was cleaning up in my own kitchen. I opened the towel drawer to get out a fresh, clean dish towel to hang over the freshly cleaned sink. The first one I chose was awful! How did this rag get into my towel drawer?
The next towel I chose to hang was no better! In fact, there was not one clean looking dish towel in my kitchen.
I had to smile as I remembered the urgency with which I talked my daughters into the necessity of clean looking dish towels. Yet, I had not noticed my own towels’ pitiful state.
How true this is of many areas of our lives. We are quick to notice the “dirty towels” in others lives, when ours’ may be just as bad or worse.
Jesus addressed this very issue in Luke 6:41-43 (NLT)
41 “And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? 42 How can you think of saying, ‘Friend, let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.”
Could it be that the very thing we feel needs to be changed in our daughter-in-law (son-in-law) (neighbor) (co-worker) (fellow church worker) is an issue that we ourselves have trouble with?
How blind we can be to our own “issues!”
Next time I feel the need to “clean up” someone else’s towels – I best check my own first.