Betrayed by Kenmore?

Dishwasher gone awry and guilt trip.


When our new Kenmore dishwasher arrived 7 years ago I was happy as a June bug. Not only had we moved into a new house but we had invested in a work horse that would faithfully clean our dishes for years to come! When the service person, a guy fresh out of high school struggled to install it and chipped off a piece of Formica from the counter I quickly forgave him so I could put the machine to work. Soon the Kenmore got busy cleaning family and visitors' dishes. But then a pattern emerged. As I unloaded dishes to my great dismay I noticed food particles clinging to glasses and plates. Trying to solve the problem I switched to name brand detergents. But the dirty dish situation did not improve. Battling for sanitary conditions I instructed every family member to not only rinse but scrub their dishes before sticking them inside the plastic cavern. Yet to my horror one day when I opened the dishwasher a dark mass had built up around the door’s rubber casing. Mold! I counter attacked with essential oil of lemon and cloves and baking soda. But despite my efforts the mold stubbornly clung to the dishwasher’s bowels. In a desperate attempt to eradicate the problem I brought out a gallon of bleach despite dire warnings from the online “dishwasher mold community”. Did it help you ask? No. My anger with Kenmore reached a seismic high as I scrubbed the racks with a toothbrush dipped in bleach and I shamed the machine's manufacturer for sending me a lemon.

Out of all their appliances, why was MY Kenmore an aberration from the line of reliable and trustworthy gadgets? I’m not proud to say I resigned myself to this miserable dish situation until Mom and Dad arrived. But as my parents hand washed every utensil I finally came out of denial. Gathered for a powwow at the dining room table I agreed to get rid of the defective Kenmore and shop for a different brand. The next week a stainless steel Maytag arrived with another service guy accompanying the big box. But instead of getting to work the new man scratched his head then spoke: “Mam. I cannot install your appliance.” I looked at him in panic and asked why? “Someone put hardwood beneath the machine’s designated spot on the floor. If I force the machine into the narrow opening, it’ll be stuck at an angle. I cannot with a good conscience install it wrongfully.” Thunderstruck I gaped then rallied to ask the question: “Do you think my Kenmore suffered from being wrongfully installed all this time?” The service guy scratched his beard and nodded thoughtfully. “It’s possible mam.. See - if it’s been operating at an angle and tilted upwards at the front the pump may not have been able to drain the water.” “Oh,” I responded. Racked with guilt for my rants and accusations I apologized to the ripped out appliance being carted to the dump. “I’m so sorry! If only I had know I would’ve set things right.” Armed with a crowbar my husband entered then crouched in the small opening beneath our kitchen counter and ripped out board after board of oak flooring. The installer measured the space and nodded. “Good.” The men carefully slid the Maytag into place then plugged and connected the drain. Soon a pleasant hum invaded my home as we tested the “auto program”. After the cycle finished I opened the new dishwasher with trepidation. My eyes scanned each dish and I lifted each glass up to the light for a more thorough inspection. “Clean!” I ran from room to room to show family members the excellent result. When going to bed that night I promised myself to never forget that installation is key. From now on I’d be vigilant and draw from my experience. Then I mused.... Am I a perfect Kenmore manufactured by my Maker? Are you? Have we assumed there is something inherently wrong with us and tried multiple rounds of detergents, essential oils and even bleach to clean up our interior messes? Psalm 139 states that I’m wonderfully and awesomely made. Yet we don’t always produce fruit of righteousness but sometimes the rotten fruit of jealousy, strife, complaining and anger. I thought of the fact that my Maker provided a service manual called the Bible. I never consulted my Kenmore appliance instruction booklet. But I’d say it’s an absolute necessity that we do so as we represent God’s own line of amazing creations who bear his name. Another mistake I made was to outsource the installation to an improperly trained “installer”. Who helped install you? Your parents, your education, your culture, your own opinions? If we depend upon anyone else but the Kenmore expert for the job, chances are we get installed wrongfully. Let’s admit it, we may have endured Formica chips and cuts where our childhood installers tried to force us into the place. Perhaps you have experienced the rough treatment of being wedged in by being belittled and criticized? Or maybe the crushing pressure and compression of other people’s expectations of you. In my experience, even well meaning parents and role models might shove us into family systems which make us operate at an angle where our negative emotions don’t drain but accumulate.

Our emotions are meant to be processed in such a way that sadness can be drained and bitterness washed away. Anger may churn for a night but shouldn’t remain forever. So what am I suggesting?

1. That if you have blamed your Manufacturer for making you a faulty product, ask His forgiveness. 2. That if you’ve neglected reading the manual on how you’re meant to function under the most optimal conditions, then start now. 3. That you forgive and release any wrongful installers in your life of anything they did that contributed to you malfunctioning. 4. And if you like, I invite you to pray this with me:

“Lord. I want to be made clean and to clean well. I don’t want yucky residues of fear, sadness and bitterness to encroach and taint what I’m supposed to be doing in life. I don’t want to be backed up with filthy water and residue from past hurts or toxic attitudes. Lord help me drain properly. And if I’m operating from a wrongful angle I give you permission to rip out any bottom beneath me that makes me unstable. Thank you Jesus for getting down on your knees with a crowbar and eliminating any hindrances. Would you also bring out your level and stabilize me?

Friends, isn’t is good that Jesus doesn’t cart us off to the trash heap to replace us with a Maytag. We are fixable. Let’s submit to His recalibration process and start spreading joy by pumping out sparkly silverware, dishes and glasses. And then let's set the table for a hungry world waiting for the Father’s life giving meals.



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Out of all their appliances, why was MY Kenmore an aberration from the line of reliable and trustworthy appliances they produced over the years? Then Mom and Dad arrived from Norway and hand washed the dishes.

"Is it really that bad?" I asked while emerging from the denial I'd sunk into.

"Yes", was the answer.

Gathered for a powwow at the dining room table I agreed to get rid of the defective Kenmore and shop for a different brand. The next week a stainless steel Maytag arrived with another service guy accompanying the big box. But instead of getting to work the new man scratched his head then spoke: “Mam. I cannot install your appliance.” I looked at him in panic and asked why? “Someone put hardwood beneath the machine’s designated spot on the floor. If I force the machine into the narrow opening, it’ll be stuck at an angle. I cannot with a good conscience install it wrongfully.” Thunderstruck I gaped then rallied to ask the question: “Do you think my Kenmore suffered from being wrongfully installed all this time?” The service guy scratched his beard and nodded thoughtfully. “It’s possible mam.. See - if it’s been operating at an angle and tilted upwards water may not have drained but accumulated inside.” “Oh,” I responded. Racked with guilt for my rants and accusations I apologized to the ripped out appliance being carted to the dump. “I’m so sorry! If only I had known I would’ve set things right.” Armed with a crowbar my husband entered then crouched in the small opening beneath our kitchen counter and ripped out board after board of oak flooring. The installer measured the space and nodded. “Good.” The men carefully slid the Maytag into place and plugged in and connected the drain. Soon a the familiar hum invaded my home as we tested the “auto program” and after the cycle finished I opened the new dishwasher with trepidation. My eyes scanned each dish and I lifted each glass up to the light for a more thorough inspection. “Clean!” I ran from room to room to show family members the excellent result. That evening I promised myself to never forget that installation is key. Then I mused.... Am I a perfect Kenmore manufactured by my Maker? Are you? Have we assumed there is something inherently wrong with us and tried multiple rounds of detergents, essential oils and even bleach to clean up our inside messes? Psalm 139 states that I’m wonderfully and awesomely made. Yet we don’t always produce fruit of righteousness but sometimes the rotten fruit of jealousy, strife, complaining and anger. At other times sadness clings to us no matter how hard we try to flush it. I thought of the fact that my Maker provided a service manual called the Bible. I never consulted my Kenmore appliance instruction booklet. But I’d say it’s an absolute necessity that we do so as we represent God’s own line of amazing creations who bear his name. Another mistake I made was to outsource the installation to an improperly trained “installer”. Who helped install you? Your parents, your education, your culture, your own opinions? If we depend upon anyone else but our Kenmore expert for the job, chances are we get installed wrongfully. Let’s admit it, our childhoods may have suffered from more than one Formica chip when installers tried to force us into place. Perhaps you experienced the rough treatment of being wedged into a belittling space filled with criticism? Or maybe the crushing pressure and compression of other people’s expectations of you. Sometimes even well meaning parents and role models shove us into family systems which operate at an angle that don't allow for negative emotions to drain. Consider this: what if our Master Installer wants to correct our angle so our sadness gets drained and bitterness washes away? And what if anger just gets to churn for a few hours but doesn't remain forever.

So what am I suggesting?

1. That if you have blamed your Manufacturer for making you a faulty product, ask His forgiveness. 2. That if you’ve neglected reading the manual on how you’re meant to function under the most optimal conditions, then start now. 3. That you forgive and release any wrongful installers in your life of anything they did that contributed to you malfunctioning. 4. And if you like, I invite you to pray this with me: “Lord. I want to be made clean and to clean well. I don’t want yucky residues of fear, sadness and bitterness to encroach and taint what I’m supposed to be doing in life. I don’t want to be backed up with filthy water from past hurts or toxic attitudes of my own. Lord come drain me. And if I’m operating from a wrongful angle I give you permission to rip out any bottom beneath me that makes me unstable or tilts me the wrong way that . Thank you Jesus for getting down on your knees with a crowbar and eliminating any hindrances standing in my way. Would you also bring out your level and straighten me?"

Friend, if you've ever considered Jesus replacing you with a Maytag, forget it!

He is just not interested in carting us off to the trash heap. We are fixable. Instead, let's submit to His recalibration process and start spreading joy by pumping out sparkly silverware, dishes and glasses to set a table for a hungry world waiting for the Father’s life giving meals.

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