Whited Sephulchre

Virus lockdown means one thing to me – RENOVATE!   I have cleaned out closets, attic, drawers, and cupboards.  The Salvation Army has gained significant amounts of clothing and household goods from my coffers.  I have emptied, scrubbed, folded, spindled, mutilated, and rearranged virtually every room in the house.  What’s left?

You had to ask!  I had a brainstorm!  I have a room, which used to house the furnace but now only contains the water heater and some air ducts.  About half of the room is empty, wasted space, but it is unsightly and I keep the door closed on it all of the time.  Besides, the water heater generates some heat and I don’t want that in the house during these hot summer months.  Unfortunately, it is the last frontier!

I got a vision of the room as it could be and began shopping online – flooring, crown moulding, paint, room divider, bench and shoe cubby, pictures, hooks – a mud room in the making!  Excited that I had a new project, I waited for the necessary items to arrive (I am on VERY friendly terms with the delivery drivers in my area 🙂  )

First, of course, was paint.  I had no idea the walls would absorb as much paint as they did.  Or maybe the paint was to blame….  Needless to say, I ran out and had to get a different can for the last wall.  Exact same shade.  Unfortunately, not the same finish, which I did not discover until I used a brush full to touch up one of the other walls.  Surprise!  Ugh.  I’m too old for this.

Next came the flooring – only because the other stuff hadn’t arrived yet.  I had purchased this new peel-and-stick vinyl planking.  Instructions said to make sure the surface was clean and free of dust and dirt.  So I scrubbed the floor (1990’s vinyl) and finished by wiping it all down with alcohol.  Next step: installation!  This should be a breeze. And it would have been, if I could hold the razor knife straight!  Apparently I do not know how to measure and calculate properly because I had plenty of extra pieces. (Thank you, Lord!)

Flooring down!  I must say it is beautiful.  Oops.  It needs a threshold.  There wasn’t one before, but now there is a slight lift as you walk into the room so a threshold is needed.  Online I go!  I found just what I wanted, but not before I saw the perfect pergola for my back deck.  (I do hope this credit card is not maxed out.)

While I waited for other items to arrive, I installed a coat rack on one wall, below which I would place the bench (if it ever gets here).  Waiting, waiting….threshold is here!  Wait! Is that the pergola laying in the driveway?  Ugh!

Now, installing a threshold is a very simple matter.  Measure.  (Uh, we have already determined this is not my strong suit)  Cut the threshold to the proper length.  Stain to the proper color.  Install.  Nothing to it.  Except…..why won’t it slide into the doorway?  Because some nincompoop hammered shims under the door frame to level it.  An hour and three chisels and two hammers later, I am on my way to the emergency room.  (Sigh)

The room itself is finished.  The walls and trim are beautiful (except for one spot on the first wall …maybe my coat will cover that).  The flooring is gorgeous and so, if I may brag a bit, is the threshold.  The bench and room divider arrive tomorrow, and then I will have a completed mudroom.

I feel quite accomplished.  Yet even as I worked on the room, I was reminded of a scripture verse:

Matthew 23:27

“Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.”

I have taken a room that was essentially useless, and turned it into usable space simply by covering over the ugly that was there (and still is, underneath).  The analogy to so many who claim to be Christians doesn’t escape me.  They clean up pretty nice on (some) Sunday mornings, but the rest of the time it is impossible to distinguish them from those who do not profess the name of Christ.  Whited sepulchres, full of dead men’s bones.  Putting on a good show but inside, in deep trouble.

2 Timothy 3:1-5

1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.   2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; 5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

These verses describe those who are lost; those who are not believers; and then these verses admonish believers to stay away from them.  But how do we do that when they are coming into our sanctuaries on some Sunday mornings?  I think we have to remind ourselves that we are in the last days.  The time is short, and Christ is coming back to claim His bride and take her back to His home for the marriage supper.  Every person we encounter is in one of two states:  either they are headed to heaven, or they are headed to hell.  We have to remember that we may be the last light they encounter before they step into eternity.  And we have to make that light shine so bright that they turn away from the darkness.  So, dearly beloved, be the light.  Be Jesus in a real world.

John 15:12

“This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.”

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