Weekend of cleaning (in more ways than one)


We finished up the working week last Friday night by tuning in to the Hawks game against Collingwood. It was awful to watch. It wasn’t just the woeful performance by the Hawks, it was also a horribly boring game. It was just that sort of week. From a peak of spending the previous weekend with Kiddo and Mic in beautiful Lakes Entrance, it quickly descended and it felt like it was bottoming out as the game progressed. Thankfully, Hugh Jackman and Russell Crowe were belting out pieces from Les Miserables on Channel 32 and it provided much needed respite. I toggled between the two and increasingly, spent more time watching Jean Valjean and Inspector Javier and less on Stratton and Company.

On Saturday, the instinct was to clean. I felt like I needed to do some cleaning. Maybe it was just a subconscious push to scrub out the grime that has built up since we left Lakes Entrance. After brekky and washing up, I started to clean shelves and drawers in the kitchen. I had wanted to do some vacuuming but Tress picked that up, so I dived into the kitchen cleaning mission. I emptied out old jars of spices and sauces, scrubbed out shelves and drawers, lined them afresh, and threw out a whole bunch of old stuff. Glasses, teapots, mugs, pots, old jars, either got thrown out or rearranged.

Knowing there is nothing stale in the kitchen and assured the shelves and drawers are clean, is a wonderful state of mind to be in.

We then got out and bought lunch to take away. After lunch, we got some groceries. Compliant to a tee, I put on a face mask for the first time when we went to the shops. It felt really uncomfortable and within a few minutes, I understood how a non-reusable mask had to be discarded after a single use. I ploughed on nevertheless, and ignored both discomforts. Other than working harder to breathe, I was also self conscious – I always thought it impolite to cover up my face when interacting with my fellow human beings. I had to work a touch harder, to keep that mask on despite this other discomfort.

Back from grocery shopping, I cooked a pasta sauce and then marinated some chicken for a curry I wanted to cook the next day – all for the week’s lunches so we don’t have to leave home and can conveniently pop something in the microwave on each workday.

On Sunday, we did the St Alf’s online service as usual. This time however, there were repeats of “Going Bananas”, the school holidays program that go on each winter break. This time however, everything was online and some of it were presented for the service. It was quite good to be able to follow these. Even better was Lauren Weatherlake’s sermon on Luke 5:33-39. The bit that grabbed me was whether my instinctive reach for that brand of Christianity that is within typical middle class respectability borders on being Pharisaic. Putting on grace so that we can introduce Jesus to that part of the wider community that Jesus cared for the most, need to come to the fore. Putting on grace. That is something I needed to learn, or re-learn.

Maybe there are those nether parts inside me that need a good scrub. There may be old jars of stale and expired material that I needed to throw out, so that those parts feel clean and fresh again. Lining my thoughts and actions with fresh space for new things may be the order for the day. Maybe I need to work harder to deal with this discomfort too.