Do you feel vulnerable when you’re vacuuming out your car at the car wash? Even though I know the danger is minimal, something about bending into the floorboard with the noise of the vacuum and no line of sight gives me that slight uneasy feeling every time.
Saturday morning, as I was sucking the grass and other debris out of my car, and after I assured myself I wasn’t being attacked from behind, the thought occurred to me, “There is no amount of cleaning that will ever allow me to stop cleaning my car for good.”
For as long as I’m driving this car, I’ll inevitably end up with a dirty car that needs cleaning again. Periodically, unless I want it to get out of control, I’ll need to do the necessary maintenance of cleaning out my car.
The same is true for our personal lives. Too often I’ll acknowledge that I’ve done the work, learned something, made progress, arrived at a new revelation, then slip back into unawareness or apathy or overconfidence.
Just like the car, I end up back at the proverbial car wash, asking myself, “Am I always going to have to work at this?” And the answer is an inarguable “yes.” Till the day we die we will be a work in progress, in need of tune-ups, adjustments, clean outs.
And as exhausting as that can feel at times, it’s okay. “Progress is more important than perfection,” read the quote that popped up earlier on my feed, and how true that is. There’s a balance between striving and stressing, and in our own lives I hope we can find that happy place of peace and persistence.