The Dishes are Piling Up


Now after John had been taken into custody, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” ‭‭Mark‬ ‭1‬:‭14‬-‭15‬

And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19

Imagine one day you ate a meal and didn’t wash the dishes. Then you went a couple more days and did the same thing. You were tired, and the pile of dishes was starting to cause you anxiety. It wasn’t a big deal, though, until all of a sudden you were out of dishes. So in the interest of caring for yourself you went out and bought more dishes. You can’t eat off dirty dishes, after all.
Every day that pile of dishes haunted you. You started feeling sick when you thought about them. You were having a hard time sleeping. But you kept buying more dishes, sometimes buying the same ones because you liked them but sometimes buying different ones because the old ones weren’t working for you at the time. All the while your pile of dirty dishes was growing, and by this time your counters were cluttered.

Overcome with the anxiety about your dishes, you opened Facebook and announced that you were not okay, and your dirty dishes were taking over your life. You discovered that most of your friends had the same problem, you were not alone, “it’s okay not to be okay,” and you needed to keep doing what you could to survive. It turned out there was a whole “tribe” of perpetual dish purchasers. Some said, “Let me know if I can do anything to help.” No one offered a solution, only good vibes and “prayers headed your way.”
Deep down you knew the solution to your problem. If someone dared suggest that you implement that solution, though, you would be offended at their apparent brushing-off of your problem. Buying dishes is easy. Washing them is hard... especially when your kitchen is full of them. Talking about the dishes seemed to be sufficient to hold you over until the next time they overwhelmed you.

Back to reality. Your original dishes are all your problems—your grief, your hurts, your sin, your inadequacies, the stress of human life. The dishes you buy are the things you try to do to cope with your problems—shopping, eating too much, wasting time with media, etc., and the food left on the dishes is people’s platitudes and your own “words of affirmation.”

Admitting that the solution is to wash the dishes is repenting of your sin and turning to Jesus (Mark 1:15). To start the hard task of washing the dishes and to commit to washing them every day is to take up your cross daily and follow Him (Luke 9:23). You’ve dug yourself into a hole, but now you have Jesus to get you out. You also have the church, many of whom can see clearly from outside the hole and can help you out of it. Jesus is with you and is working all things for your good (Romans 8:28). You have a whole family to help you keep up with those dishes and make sure you do them.

You’ll start getting rid of some of those extra dishes because you know Jesus is there for you to cast all your anxiety upon him because He cares for you (1 Peter 5: 6-7). You don’t need those worldly comforts to help you survive. God holds your very life in His hand.

And you realize this isn’t a one-and-done operation. You can’t wash the dishes once and expect them to stay washed. You also know that sometimes the dishes will pile up, but now you know the sooner you get back to them the more peace you will have. The Christian life is hard but so sweet. Everything has a purpose. Every day has hope. God is on His throne, and He is with you if you believe in and obey Him (John 14:23).

Your job as a Christian is to repent of sin, believe in Jesus, read God’s Word and obey it, and fellowship with other Christians in a Bible-believing, Bible-obeying church.
And that means washing your dishes too.