May you be blessed in the city, and blessed in the country! (Deuteronomy 28:3)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Washing Dishes or The Sanctified Sink

(Note: I posted this on an old social networking site back in October 18, 2006.)

I like washing dishes. For some reason, I enjoy it. I like getting the plates and pots and pans and utensils all squeaky clean. I like the smell of the dishwashing liquid.

For nearly a week, we hadn't had much water here in our apartment. This was pretty unusual, since water hadn't been scarce for months. Emily, our helper, told us that our landlady said there was some pipe construction going on somewhere. That being the case, a trickle would come about lunchtime, but only downstairs. For our bathroom upstairs, water would start pouring again mid to late evening. So it was a surprise when Ferdie, my husband, opened the faucet in the kitchen sink after lunch today and told me to look — water! Not just trickles, but strong, flowing water! "Praise the Lord!" I said. "I'm excited to wash the dishes," I told him. (Or maybe I was more excited to get the place cleaned up of the mess! Emily comes only twice a week, by the way.)

So there I was again, my usual spot — the sanctified sink. I like washing dishes not just because I like washing dishes. I like washing dishes because I get to ponder or praise or plan or pray or do other things. At times, I find myself worshiping the Lord while rounding up the plates with liquid suds. Sometimes, I ponder about my life while removing the grease off the grill pan. Other times, I pray for others while rinsing the glasses. Or I pray for those who gave us the plates and pots and pans for our wedding. Still other times, I think about projects at work while lining up the dishes on the drainer.

I remember one time, while washing the dishes, I was sharing stories with my sister-in-law, Sim. (She and my brother, Dino, came from their couples' Time Out Vacation and they were our houseguests; Dino and Ferdie were out playing badminton at that time.) It just amused me how much we shared about the Lord while I was at the sink! Then there are other times when I find myself singing and/or dancing to cool worship or Christian music while washing dishes.

A lot of thanksgiving goes out, too, while I'm busy letting the water run over these tools used for cooking and eating. I tell the Lord I'm grateful for all that's happening in my life...and yes, non-stick pans! Oh, dishwashing (or should I say, "panwashing") is so easy with these wonderful inventions! Thank You, Lord, for Teflon! It's a different story with the rice cooker pot when the hardened rice stuck to the bottom and sides is as stubborn as a mule. Or the grill pan when bits of burnt meat are stuck in between grooves. During these times, it's rather difficult to worship, as I am very much focused on the task at hand. So I keep at it — several rounds of washing till the pot and pan are free of any food residue. The lesson here? Perseverance.

So there you go, the kitchen sink has become a place of God's visitation for me in many ways. That's why I can call it the sanctified sink. Just now I remember [a saint…was it St Teresa of Avila? I could be wrong…] who, while cooking an egg, would levitate in ecstasy because of her love for the Lord. Well, I have never yet levitated in ecstasy while washing dishes. But I can account for the joy I've experienced because of the Lord while doing this mundane task.

And now, if you'll excuse me, I'll be preparing in a need for me to wash dishes tonight. Ferdie and I are having [local] steak at [a nearby diner].

So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God. (1 Corinthians 10:31)

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