|[Image by Tbsteve]|
A good friend told me in the Fall of 2007 when she opened my room door and caught me in the act. On a day when young men walked about, scouting the campus grounds, and pretty college girls reciprocated, cat-walking along dimly lit dormitory corridors and moonlit courtyards, I was caught grabbing my bath towel and dashing to my bathroom.
I smiled back at my friend, and then I told her I wasn't what she thought I was. On that sticky day, I only needed to feel that second downpour of pure cooling water drenching me from the top of my hair strands to the bottom of my small toes, making the heat subside and silently refreshing my bones. I was hot and the shower was needed to solve all my problems, even though it was the second time that day. I was not a fish. I did not have double showers every day, just on really hot days.
* * * * *
It is indeed universal knowledge that water does some very nice things. It cleanses the body, refreshes, cools, warms, and quenches our ever-growing thirst.
But this particular scripture always blows my mind when I read it.
"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish." Ephesians 5: 25-27.
5 Things I realized:
#1: There's something that cleanses better than water. It is the word of God. Baptismal water is an outward show of being renewed, but without an accompaniment of the Word of God, it is nothing. Water cannot remove visible spots or wrinkles, but the Word of God goes beyond removing such things as the world deems as permanent scars.
#2: Love is the declaration of the word, and it sanctifies and cleanses, more than water.
#3: The word 'washing' is the Greek word 'Loothos' which means 'a bath or baptism.' The 'Word' is the Greek word 'Rhmati' (Rhema), which means 'Utterance/Declaration.' In essence, this scripture is indicating that we need to be baptized in the word of God, just like the baptism of water. The word (an utterance or declaration) is the highest purifier. It is the affirmation that denounces any contradictions. It says "you can do it" when everyone says "you can't do it."
#4: Our words are very powerful. If a man presents his wife before his peers, and sings only good songs about her, leaving her weaknesses behind, then only her light will shine. His peers will take his word for it.
#5: Calling those things that be not as though they are is like washing of water by the word. The water aims for the cleansing of physical things, but the word of God is a deeper baptism into which we are not ruled by events that present themselves as facts.
Encouragement for the Day: Water can cleanse your physical body, but only the Word of God can cleanse your heart. Sanctify yourselves with His word, and you won't go wrong.