Moldy Shower Curtain Liners

I love my bathroom! It’s pink and it’s pretty. Some of my favorite pictures of the girl are hanging in there. It’s very “Teri” so to speak. When I go in there to get ready for my day, I smile.

In no way is it the “perfect bathroom” … It’s smallish, lacks counter space, and has lovely tan tile circa 1968 (walls, shower, floor … lots of tan tile!). The tub is not a big garden tub with a pretty chandelier hanging above it. The lighting isn’t great. The window is painted shut.

But, I love it! I love the color on the walls. I love the basket that holds all the goodies needed by a 30-something mom and a 9-year-old daughter … everything from Satin Hands to American Girl sparkle lotion. We have it all. Baskets of hair accessories, containers of brushes and combs, pretty candles and containers of body butter and …

A moldy shower curtain liner. A gross, falling apart, moldy shower curtain liner. The thing is – that doesn’t show. So, does it really matter?

Somehow I get caught up in this kind of thinking spiritually sometimes. People look at me and see a pastor’s wife who knows Scripture and supports her husband’s ministry. They see a mother who is faithful to pray for and with her child. They see a crisis pregnancy center volunteer and Bible study teacher. They see a list-making, menu-following, generally organized person who enjoys spending time studying.

And I confess it’s easy sometimes to “believe my own press” and forget about all those moldy linings in my life that others don’t see.

Others never see the battle in my mind … the struggle I have to keep my thoughts pure and blameless before God. Hidden from them is the envy that colors how I treat others. Covered up by public eloquence are all the private times when I speak from anger and hatefulness. Oh, there are many hidden moldy places in my life.

lessons from a moldy shower curtain liner

I often find myself reading in James about obedience

And remember, it is a message to obey, not just to listen to. If you don’t obey, you are only fooling yourself. For it you just listen and don’t obey, it is like looking at your face in a mirror but don’t nothing to improve your appearance. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. But if you keep looking steadily into God’s perfect law – the law that sets you free – and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for it. (1:22-25, NLT, emphasis added)

Far too often, I treat my spiritual life the same way I do my bathroom. I do a quick sweep but never really clean. I just pull the pretty shower curtain closed and hide the moldy liner … and I walk away from the mirror unchanged.

It’s a lot of work to take down that liner and soak it in the bleach then let it air dry and rehang it. It’s a lot easier to close the curtain. So much like my life. It’s a lot of work to take thoughts captive, to be intentional about kindness, and to speak only words that build up. It’s easier to be a pretty Christian in public and neglect the private work that must be done to be clean. Henri Nouwen said, “Setting our hearts on something involves not only serious aspiration but also strong determination. A spiritual life requires human effort.” (from Making All Things New)

I find myself aspiring often but not so frequently determined. And it the determination that takes care of the things that are unseen to others but visible to God.

Today, I’m feeling a little moldy.  What about you?

Do you have areas look pretty but are just covering up the mold beneath?
Are you walking away from the mirror of God’s Word unchanged?
Why? What steps do you need to take to clean up the mold?
What stops you?

image source:

Read the Psalms this summer with Scripture Dig!


  1. Wow Girl! I love you and I thank you for writing this and sharing it w/ us!

    Sometimes when I'm "cleaning" (shoving things away to hide them). I often think how that parallels w/ my spiritual life. On the outside everything looks fine. On the inside, I'm a HUGE mess!

    I recently went through a book called, "Returning to Holiness" by Gregory Frizell. Girl, it made me think about areas of my life I haven't thought about in a long time. The book does not allow you to IGNORE sin…it lays it all out there for ya to see!

    Sadly, I do believe I often read God's Word,and feel His conviction. Then, I close the Book, and don't give it another thought:(

  2. Nikki, thank you for your honesty! I'm tellin' ya – more and more I am realizing our struggles are "common to man (woman)" and that one of our best tools for overcoming those "hidden" things is accountability with other believers – transparent, authentic relationship. (I feel another series coming …) I love you, girl! More than you know! You are such a blessing in my life.

  3. I know the Lord lead me to this site at just the right time. I am both encouraged and convicted when I read. I need both those things a lot these days.

    Now, I can clean up with the best of 'em. (on the out side) I'll throw out a smile and a kind word all the while hiding the filth in my heart. And the thing about mold is if you don't take care of it… it just grows. I was just saying to myself this morning…Take every thought captive, Take every thought captive…over and over and over.

  4. I've only read two day's of posts and I love you already! You spoke directly to my heart today, Teri!

  5. Teri said, "one of our best tools for overcoming those "hidden" things is accountability with other believers – transparent, authentic relationship."


  6. Amen sister. Feels like I'm getting a fresh start,moving into another house. I don't want to get moldy, in the bathroom, or spiritually.

  7. This is so like me. How refreshing to know others struggle in this area. I'm glad others can not see the "moldy" side of myself and often over look the fact the nothing is hidden from Christ.

  8. Teri, Thanks for fixing the link on Pinterest 🙂 I like this picture you’ve given us here. I’d like to add a twist to it if I may. I’m a decade or so ahead of you and somewhere along the way I was sick of cleaning moldy shower liners 🙂 So I now flip the liner up over the shower bar after showering and let it drip dry. No mold, so far! In the spiritual application is that avoidance or preventive maintenance? 🙂 ~Joyce

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