Dirty Laundry 1: Introduction

“We do not want to be found naked, but clothed; so that what is mortal will be transformed by life.” 2 Corinthians 5:4

“Now you’re dressed in a new wardrobe.  Every item of your new way of life is custom-made by the Creator, with his label on it.  All the old fashions are now obsolete.” Colossians 3:10 MSG

“For all of you whowere baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.” Galatians 3:27

How does this look?”  This is one of those trick questions a newly wedded husband must learn to answer correctly—and the sooner, the better!  As my wife models the third outfit of the morning I am ready with one of my pre-programmed responses. “Very nice.”  “Looks great.”  “Oh, I like that!”  But when the morning fashion show begins dragging on into the fifth or sixth round, it is tempting to quote Jesus’ words in hopes of ending the parade of outfits, “Why do you worry about what you will wear” (Matt 6:28)?

A glance at the clothing industry highlights the central place our grubs have in our daily lives. For instance, the average family of four in America spent $2,601 on apparel in 2004.

The clothing industry made 163 billion dollars in sales in 2002.

The average department store spent $5,172 billion dollars in advertising the same year.  We certainly have moved away from the times and ministry of Jesus, who instructed his followers not even to take an extra coat along for the journey (Matt 10:10)!

Why the obsession with clothing?  Why do we need packed closets full of dozens of shirts and pants, shoes and coats?  Why do we stand in front of the mirror everyday and examine our daily covering before we leave the house?  While our present culture has certainly gone overboard when it comes to clothes shopping, perhaps, Jesus’ point wasn’t that clothing doesn’t matter.   Turns out that the Bible has quite a bit to say about getting dressed.   In this upcoming Sacred Analogy series called “Dirty Laundry” (written back in 2006) we’ll uncover spiritual wisdom from the most unlikely place — the laundry room.

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