At least once a week I do “the clean sweep.” I pull everything out, pick everything up, and sweep every square inch I can possibly get to, followed by the dry sweeping cloths that pick up things the broom missed, as well as all the dust bunnies under the beds and sofa. The rest of the week I make do by “sweeping the middles”—every place I can reach without moving anything. It isn’t perfect, as evidenced by what I sweep up on the day of “the clean sweep,” but it will do. I really have more important things to do than clean the floors.
I looked up “sweep” and “broom” in the concordance and found that God does not believe in “sweeping the middles.” Three evil kings were told that God would “utterly sweep away their houses,” I Kgs 14:10; 16:3; 21:21. Notice that word “utterly.” In addition God said of Babylon, “And I will make it a possession of the hedgehog, and pools of water, and I will sweep it with the broom of destruction," Isa 14:23. Do you want a good picture of how God sweeps? Read the first chapter of Zephaniah. God moves the furniture and gets under the beds when He decides to destroy sinners.
So how do we avoid that? By not just sweeping the middles when it comes to our lives. We need to clean up every nook and cranny, every hidden corner of our minds, every space beneath the larger items in our lives that we think can hide the sin from God. And grace means that after we do our best to clean the place up, God will come in to clean up what we could not, in the places we cannot reach.
When it comes to life, don’t ever be satisfied with just “sweeping the middles.” Do “the clean sweep” every day of your life so you don’t get caught up in “the broom of destruction.”
I indeed baptize you in water unto repentance: but he that comes after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you in the Holy Spirit and fire: whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly cleanse his threshing-floor; and he will gather his wheat into the garner, but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire, Matt 3:11,12.