I’ve often admired the darling little signs hanging on my friends’ walls that say “Bless this Mess.” I don’t have a sign like that because a) I basically never buy home decor, and b) I always frantically tidy up when I know someone is coming over, and want them to think my house always looks that way.
So, when early this Friday morning I got a WhatsApp message announcing that our new priest would be coming by to bless the homes in our missionary community, I panicked. I weighed my options. I had to either claim that our home had been recently attacked by balloon-popping, dish-dirtying marauders; clean like a maniac; or ask him not to come by. (Note, please, my prideful omission of the most obvious and honest option which would be to let him wade through my messy home to bless it. Of course, then he might realize that this may be what the house of a busy mother of seven occasionally, or often, looks like).
I felt like refusing a blessing was really not a good choice. A rushed cleaning and re-cleaning (as my toddlers threw goldfish crackers on the floor, got into the watermelon, and took all the toys out of their closet) ensued. He came, he blessed. I sat down exhausted in my relatively tidy house and realized I had made a mistake.
God wants to bless my mess. He wants to meet me in the midst of goldfish crumbs and oatmeal crusted dishes and sprinkle or pour out his grace there. He loves the mess: the mess that my kids make, that I make, and that we make trying to live and love together. When, in my pride, I think I have to have everything in order to receive his grace, I exhaust myself. I rush around and miss out on the sweetness of my children’s delight at fresh watermelon and a morning that had nothing else on the schedule.
Help me, Jesus! Help me to welcome you into the trenches with me and receive your grace sprinkled throughout the chaos of my “normal” day. Bless this mess.