mess- a.) a disordered, untidy, offensive, or unpleasant state or condition b.) one that is disordered, untidy, offensive, or unpleasant usually because of blundering, laxity, or misconduct
A few weeks ago, a sweet man in our church who used to detail vehicles offered to bless my husband and I by cleaning our car. Now let me just remind you that I have 4 and 5 year old girls. My car was a mess! Do any of you moms know what it’s like to have yogurt (yes, yogurt!) smeared on your car window? Well, I do! :/ I know, I know, I’m the only one with messy children.
This brother from church returned our car and he did an amazing job! It looked brand new! Keep in mind, it has only been a few weeks, and I have 4 and 5 year old girls. Today we’re riding through town and I say, “Girls, I’m very upset with the way my car is looking right now. Bro. Willie just cleaned it and did such a good job. It makes me sad that it’s looking like this.” They had dumped puzzle pieces in the seat, left trash in the floor, had toys that needed to be brought in, etc. I went on to explain to them that when we got home, they were going to have to straighten the car up again.
Adah, my precious 4 year old, replies to my gentle ranting with, “Sorry, Charlie. I don’t know why we’re so messy.”
My first instinct was to just simply shake my head. I mean, how else do you respond to that?? But that’s when I realized, life is all about making messes. As humans, we make one mess right after the other, a never ending cycle. The messes we make, however, are not what matters. What matters is how we handle those messes. Do we let them pile up, higher and higher, with rotten stenches seeping out? Or do we do the best we can to clean the mess up and get it out of the way?
I finally replied, “Sorry, Charlie, but we can’t help making messes in life. That’s why you’re so messy. And sorry, Charlie, but you have to clean those messes up. You can’t just leave them there.”
When we stopped, I got out and helped them clean up the trash, gather the toys and get rid of the mess. I originally intended, to hand them the trash bag and make them do it themselves, but then I decided to show mercy and help. That’s just what our loving heavenly Father does for His children. He understands that we were born into flesh and that making messes is human nature. And just like I, as a mother, expected my girls to clean up their messes, God expects us to straighten up our lives. Even better? If we sincerely turn to Him for help, He’ll show us grace and mercy, too.