I wiped my hands on the white hand towel hanging in my bathroom. My palms were cleaner but there was a small very black stain left on the towel. My first reaction was to frown but a smile from my heart replaced my frown as I remembered the source of that stain. I’d used a sharpie to write a Bible verse on my palms at the conclusion of a Beth Moore study, Children of The Day, on both books of Thessalonians. The verse disappeared each time I washed my hands. I’d surprised myself by willingly writing the verse on one palm and letting a friend write the rest of the verse on my other palm. I often lack a playful side. Practical jokes make me nervous. I don’t relax when teased. Inside I tense up while I bristle on the outside. But I’d gladly turned my palms up for that Bible verse. And I didn’t worry about that little black stain either. A human stain remover moved in with me when I married Ken the summer of 1999. It’s a rare meal where I don’t somehow end up with a stain on my clothing. It may be miniscule; it may be large and unsightly. I probably should wear a large bib or drape a bath towel around my neck, even in public restaurants. I resist because if truth be known I’m a little vain. I’m also insecure about my appearance. Thus, I carefully plan any outfit to be worn in public and a bath towel wrapped around my chest would certainly not be an attractive fashion accessory. No worries. Ken the stain remover superman is always ready. The first time he leaned over close at a restaurant I thought he just wanted to give me a tender kiss. While not young, we were newlyweds. But no, he’d spied a stain and said, “Let me get that before it sets.” He wields a knife to remove excess material and often has a stain remover of some sort with him. At home he has several stain removers he favors. Ken has done the laundry for years. He pretty much runs the house so I can tech edit part-time and write. He isn’t perfect at some chores like dusting or frequent enough vacuuming and washing the floors but he does a great job of the laundry and is a superior stain remover. Every single piece of laundry is inspected for any stains that need attention. Every stain is treated before the item goes into the washing machine. It’s just amazing, well he is amazing. I thank God for Ken every day, sometimes several times a day.
The other day I said to him, “God is the ultimate stain remover. He cleanses us of our sins faster than we can finish confessing them. He removes them as far from the east is from the west.” That’s Psalm 103:12 “as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.”Ken agreed with my analogy. I sometimes think about everyday tasks, events, experiences and even our daily routine as all having a sacred aspect. Other days I’m oblivious to the truth that God connections can be found all around us if we only look. At least the Bible verse written on my palms lasted long enough to show Ken. Here’s what we wrote out of 2 Thessalonians 3 part of verse 2 & 3 “For not all have faith. But the Lord is faithful.” I wrote the first sentence on my left palm and the second one went on my right. It is a portion of a verse that we can turn to when someone hurts us on purpose, or shows a lack of true compassion and caring. We tell ourselves that not all have faith but the Lord is faithful.
I like the rest of that verse where it says “He will establish you and guard you against the evil one.”
There are minutes, hours, sometimes whole days, and to be honest short seasons where I need God to establish me, to set me back on the firm foundation of my faith in God and in His Word, to keep me from straying on a path to nowhere good, to help me deafen my ears to untruths. “God, keep me established in you no matter what disrupts my day, my plans, anything that leads me away from staying close to you. In the name of your precious son, Jesus.”