This weekend was really busy. We had a fun time driving to the Cities (Minneapolis-St. Paul). Taking the boys to their first baseball game and a good visit with friends. We also had a lot of work to get done once we got back home. Daniel had a sermon to finish for Sunday and I had the Seminary and Synod office building to clean. By the time Saturday was over we were pretty worn out.
Often when I’m cleaning it gives me time to reflect and think (If I’m not jamming out to tunes!). This past Saturday I was scrubbing this coffee pot that had been left on for at least a day, the bottom was gunky, black and charred. That got me reflecting, thinking about life before children and about myself.
One thing specifically is that I like to have things clean, especially on the surface (don’t look too closely at my closets!!). So when I sit down to drink coffee and read a book, everything is in its place and I don’t have this nagging feeling that I still have things that need to be done or finished. This was a whole lot easier to keep on top of when it was just Daniel and I making the messes.
By the time we had three boys under three, this mindset had to go, or I would never sit down and rest! When I had a baby and a toddler I could still kind of get all the toys picked up by the end of the night and keep on top of the dishes and the laundry (sort of). But once I had a baby and two toddlers, forget it! Toys everywhere, endless diaper changes, endless dishes, endless meals to figure out and prepare. No longer could I fit it all in. So yes, my neat freak, clean surfaces, checklist personality had some major adjustments. It makes me laugh now; here I am trying to check off my lists and being swamped with the reality of toddlers and babies! So much cleaning after everyone else!
I still function a bit better when things are semi picked up and I have space on the counter tops when I start cooking. I have found my “groove” for the most part that allows lots of grace and messiness, but also a space that I can function in better mentally.
As I was cleaning out that blackened coffee pot, I was feeling a bit annoyed, I knew it was just an absent minded mistake, that I had also been guilty of in my own home a number of times (which is why I now have a coffee pot that turns itself off after two hours…). But it was still another mess I didn’t make, yes sometimes I still get annoyed more often than I would like, as I pick up after others. But as I was scrubbing that pot and the black was coming off and the bottom was starting to look silver again, it dawned on me how much I am like this burnt coffee pot. I am black and charred without Jesus. That coffee pot was never going to get clean on its own, there was nothing it could do for itself. Someone would need to come along and wash and scrub all of the charred, black, gunk off.
Just like that pot I can do nothing to wash myself and make myself clean, there is nothing I can do to be rid of the mark of sin and death. Jesus had to come down and sacrifice everything, to sacrifice His life and die on that cross, to take away my sin and shame. To rise again and conquer sin and death. So that I can believe in Him and be washed white as snow. Now I can have that right relationship with my God and Savior. When God looks at me He no longer sees the charred blackness of sin. He sees me through Jesus, and I am clean. Praise be to God, that He would do that for me, for everyone who will believes in Him.
So black coffee pot, I will smile at you and lift up a prayer of thanksgiving to God that He sacrificed all for me. This is another reminder of the huge blessings behind all that mess. Another reminder of a chance to give a prayer of thanks to God, instead of giving in to annoyance and frustration. Thank You Jesus for the reason behind all the chaos and mess in my life, Thank You Jesus for cleaning up my mess.
We are all infected and impure with sin.
When we display our righteous deeds,
they are nothing but filthy rags.
Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall,
and our sins sweep us away like the wind
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.