Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Dishes

I read in the Bible different ways that God spoke to His people. A burning bush, a still small voice, various prophets, and parables that Jesus taught, were just a few. I think He speaks to me through dishes. Actually it's more through the process of doing the dishes. I love doing dishes. I don't know exactly why. I do have theories though. So do other people. I won't discuss theirs here though. Jesus spoke many parable to many groups of people and he always had a way of connecting what what going on in the parable, or story, with what was going on in the listeners everyday life. For the farmers he told stories about farming. With the fishermen he told stories about fishing. Around business people he spoke of business transactions. With me it's dishes. Something draws me to the sink in any gathering I find myself in. In my own house i think I'm drawn there because of the amazing effort and love that my wife puts into every meal. Her stuff is incredible and I always feel the need to do dishes as a way of honoring her effort. She deserves the rest after a meal. If she makes me a peanut butter sandwich I want to wash the knife for her. Anything I can do to show my appreciation for what my stomach just experienced. It's deeper than that though. I really like doing dishes wherever I'm at. I think God draws me there. He is using parable to help me understand something deeper that I'm entrusted to do. I sometimes get a real feeling represent the people He's entrusted me to love and to work with. There's a certain process that dishes have to go through to become clean and ready for use again that I see also in the lives of people. My favorite process for dishes goes something like this. I prefer a decent time, if possible, for the stuff to soak. I'll admit, some of the stuff I'm asked to wash can be pretty well caked on. I need creative ways sometimes for them to soak, usually with a bit of soap added in. Sometimes I've been know to let something soak all night long. That usually takes care of the worst stuff, especially in well used pots and pans. The change in them after a night of soaking can be quite amazing. I've know some well used people in my life. The basic process is usually not as drastic though. I just need to provide a bit of agitating once they're in the water. Then a quick rinse and it's into the drying rack. I prefer that to a towel, unless there's an unusually large amount of them. If that happens, I'll accept help sometimes. Eventually they all get put back to be used another time, for another meal. I have been guilty of occasionally putting them away in the wrong place. It seems like that can be an annoyance for the one who wants to use it the next time. Everytime I get into the dishes process I have a distinct feeling that God is trying to whisper something into my heart about people and my part in helping them to be useful again. Everytime, sometimes two or three times a day, I experience the process and feel the satisfaction of another set done and ready for use. I wish it was that easy in my life. But I keep practicing. Some day I'll get it right. In the mean time, I just love doing dishes.