I was doing it for almost 2 hours before I realised that I had made the mistake. I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and I knew I was in trouble. The problem was not with the activity I was involved in but in what I was wearing to conduct it.
I had taken the opportunity of an unplanned day off to get some things done around the house which included painting the ceilings of both bathrooms. I had rushed out to buy paint, brushes and rollers and rushed home to get started but just over half way through I realised that I was still wearing the new t-shirt I had been given for Christmas!
As I looked at myself in the mirror it was abundantly clear that the shirt would probably never recover…it had at least 5 splashes of paint including several places where I had obviously used it as a rag to clean my hands. Prior to this moment I thought I was a very tidy painter but that is obviously not true at all! The fact that it was a dark grey shirt and that I was using white paint didn’t help any attempt to cover up what I had done wrong.
It is said that “You can’t un-ring a bell” and I would add that “You can’t un-paint a shirt!”
As I looked at the shirt hanging on the clothes line the next day I realised that it would now forever be relegated to the category of ‘work shirt’ …this is of course what is now known as a ‘First World Problem’, the fact that I have categories of clothes demonstrates that I am well looked after and have an ample supply of most things.
Sometimes we are not dressed correctly for the right occasions – maybe you wore a jacket to work for that meeting only to realise that suit of armour would have been more appropriate – maybe you rocked up in gym gear but the running shoes did not prepare you for the emotional workout you were about to face.
Life has a way of leaving ‘stains’ upon us which are difficult, if not impossible to shift but our lives have more hope than my t-shirt does because this opportunity remains…
‘Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.’ Psalms 51:7