The God of the Messy
The past two weeks we were blessed to have two of our former high school students stay with us. It was extra special because these two were from the other side of the world – South Korea. It’s crazy to think that I taught them in 10th and 11th grade, and now they are 23 and 24 years old! It was such an enjoyment to have people to talk to, to spend the day with, and to do life together. Being an extrovert, there are days I ‘lose it’ just from the fact that I have no other adult to talk to! And while yes, it’s nice being able to briefly chat with a cashier or librarian, it’s just not the same as connecting with a dear friend.
So our two former students/now friends left Friday, and John was home for the weekend. And then yesterday (Monday) was back to the grind: doing parenthood all day with no other adult around, which bites big time for me. There are days that I think I could definitely do life with another friend living in our house full-time. This is partially why I love hosting so much – I just love being around people!
At first, I didn’t understand why I was growing grumpier as the day
went dragged on. Each time I had to break up the bickering the girls would get into or Mercy would get into with her friend, I would find myself getting more tense and more frustrated. By the time John got home, I had had enough and sneaked off to our stairway to zone out on facebook and twitter and just to be brainless for a few minutes. A little while later, before I headed out to the grocery store, John asked me if I was feeling down because Ernie and Esther (our students) were no longer around. And he was right; that was it – I was coming down from a two-week high of doing life with two dear friends, and I was feeling it. Feeling the absence, feeling the loneliness.
So as I pulled into the parking lot at our grocery store, I turned off the engine and leaned back against my seat. I felt worn and weary. Already exhausted on the first day of the week. Wanting to know why there are days that seem to go so well and other days where I feel frazzled and frustrated all day long. And the tears started flowing. The kind of tears you can’t fully put into words, you don’t fully understand yourself. But it just feels good to let go and stop holding it all together. As I said my thoughts aloud to God, I found myself feeling guilty for not having it together better. For being such a mess. Saying:
“I’m sorry that I’m such a mess. That all I have to offer you is a messy life. My house is messy, my parenting is messy, my family’s schedule is messy, my communication is messy. I’m just a mess.”
And as I confessed this, it hit me that God is the God of Messy. I mean, aren’t we all a mess? Not only did God create us crazy, messy humans, but he also gave us the ability to procreate even more crazy, messy human beings. So if that’s the case, then he surely is the God of Messiness. And that actually brought me a sense of peace. A sense of calm and acceptance. That he’s not after perfection(ism). That he’s after the hearts of his messy children. This brought lightness to my tight chest, and I was able to finish up grocery shopping and head home. And then I had to laugh that just as I was starting to pray aloud to God I found myself slamming on the horn and cussing at a driver who nearly hit me. And that’s when I had to chuckle and shake my head and say, “God, thank you for being okay with messy. Because that is what I am.”