Monday, October 31, 2011

Bless This Mess

I've been one to pride myself on a well-kept home.  I like shiny sinks and floors and dusted baseboards.  Clutter makes me nervous and agitated.... ok, maybe it doesn't make me that way, but that's how I feel when I am in the midst of it.
While I have never white-glove tested anyone's home, I've certainly passed my fair share of judgement on the housekeeping skills of others.  Somehow along the way I've developed this weird way of thinking that the best kind of house is the kind that looks like no one lives in it!  Where all the personal 'messes' of it's inhabitants are well hidden from public view.  You can know me, but not by my mess.
I don't know why.
  I could psychoanalyze it and say it has something do with poor self-esteem or unrealized self-actualization or some other nonsense, but I think I'll leave the 'why' alone.  Actually I am under the care of an awesome Doctor.... a Great Physician.  He takes care of the why... or I guess you could say He took care of it a long time ago.  So I have a sickness, yes, but He's got me on the best treatment plan.  In fact, His cure-rate is 100%.

Living, real living, is messy.  He shapes, kneads, sculpts.... chisels us with His hands..... He does this with our lives, by His hands, and it is messy.
But what a beautiful mess.
It turns out the Great Doctor is a Master Craftsman as well.  An artist like no other.
In our lifetimes we will discover, through His unveiling, the most amazing treasures.

I've been thinking about this, these past few weeks.  I'm starting to see things differently.  Did you know jelly jars make the best bug catchers?  Stair landings are perfect places to proudly display legos.  Kitchen counters are the best place to line with fresh ripening harvest.  Collected leaves make great centerpieces. Stacks of music and piano benches askew beckon merry music makers.  Muddy footprints on not-so-shiny floors remind us of latest travels and seasons changed.
Yes, I'm starting to see things differently, and I don't want to trade any more minutes, that belong to creating, for cleaning.

And now counting in the thousands.....

pumpkin creations made with small hands

a beautiful mess with purpose, always there's a purpose...

sister, brother, tape, paper and markers

signs of life

a generous gift, a happy memory, an inspiration


what duty looks like

the barely there,  outdoorsy puppy-ish scent I smell when I kiss the top of his muzzle between his eyes

watching my girl do math

my boy's fingers dancing up and down the keyboard with skill I've only ever dreamed of having

my love finding an Italian chess board treasure at a yard sale
the many games played on it

the memory of my girl perched on the kitchen counter with pumpkin propped between her knees as she carefully carved the details of her canine creation

harvesting, rinsing, salting, roasting pumpkin seeds

my love spoiling me with decadent treats
him being generous with hugs and kisses
how we so often think the same thought,
fold our hands the same way
how we make tradition together

how he does his fathering

long walks on cold, sunny mornings
light showers filtered through afternoon sun

a brother on the mend
family meetings on skype

finding answers in the Word
Jesus' words
how they are printed red in my Bible
how that visual speaks so, so much to me

a new lesson I learned about reinventing the wheel....


  1. a beautiful, purposeful, simple, intentional mess! i love, love, love it (:

    thank you for the gift of your heart typing-out-loud for us to read (for me to read :). and thank you for the glimpse into your life wonderfully lived

    - - yet again, my cup runneth over! in this moment, He blesses me in the sharing of your joys. i have a grateful heart (that He has given me!)

    i love you, Dear One.

  2. I heart, heart, heart how you have fought that deep desire to keep everything "just so" – and leave room for Legos on the stair landing – and the beautiful mess – the beautiful intentional mess that lives in your house – still impeccable – still passes the white glove test I'm sure – but different. And of your thank you list – my favorite one – is the last one because it has mystery to it – I know there's a story in that – how come there's not a blog post for it? ツ I want to read that blog post – so my favorite? The thing about reinventing the wheel. I hearted your post – I heart all of your posts. God bless and keep you and each and every one of yours Kara.

  3. Craig,

    You're right. There's a story. :)
    Thanks for prompting me to write about it. My blog post doesn't go very far into the personal mundane that led to learning the lesson of not reinventing the wheel. Suffice it to say, that came about over a few weeks of trying to figure out everything from how to simplify to how to teach my daughter math.
    I tried to take a slightly more global approach in my post. ;>
    I hope you like it!
    And thanks for reading.