When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning. (Isaiah 4:4)
Vanity and cruelty. Filth and blood.
The power to wash. The strength to burn.
It is God’s responsibility to cleanse and purify our world after we have defiled it.
Like children who have been left at home alone, and get into everything. And leave a mess.
We’ve done all this!
But someone has to clean it up and make it right again.
The process of sanctifying our world.
The act of recreation.
To reestablish the virtues.
Again and again this process takes place.
We are the stained cloth.
God is our laundress.
Plunging us deep into his grace and mercy.
Again and again.
Gradually, through repeated exposure to his love, our blemish fades.
The fabric of our being is softened.
And being handled by God is no longer an affront to our pride.
We exchange our exterior primping for an interior tidying.
And we gather ourselves together and get back on our feet, as though we had just come through a battle with a flu virus.
The chaff of our ignorance consumed in the furnace of God.
In the end, there may still be a mark. A smudge.
A remembrance of what was once.
Our stain has been absorbed.
And we are a new creation of God.