Monday, September 14, 2009

Chaos Before Comeliness

My house is a wreck today. All of the rooms upstairs have been nearly gutted, except for the one room packed floor-to-ceiling with furniture (through which I had to crawl spelunker-like to get to my printer this morning. With all the contorting and twisting I had to do, I was sure I was going to get stuck and they'd have to send a rescue crew. Thankfully it wasn't dark in there like a real cave or I would have freaked). My living and dining rooms could double as a resale shop - table crammed with knick-knacks and clocks and lamps, floor strewn with the contents of five closets and beds. Even the family room got into the act and absorbed all of our laundry baskets and piles of sheets and mattress covers. Yep, it's utter chaos here.

But there's a purpose for all of it: we're getting new carpet in all but one of our upstairs rooms. Considering the carpet looked worn and stained when we moved in six years ago, it's long overdue. We're pretty excited. Tonight we'll be walking on soft plush carpet instead of the matted down berber we're used to. And in due time the chaos will disappear and order will be restored. That makes all of the clutter and mess today worth it. It doesn't make it any less messy. It doesn't negate all the hard work it took to tear things apart and all the effort it's going to take to restore things. But knowing the end in mind, this woman-who-hates-clutter can tolerate the current state of our house.

I need to remember this. So often when life gets messy I throw a fit. I don't like relationships that are full of junk, where I'm constantly navigating a minefield and often getting stuck in tight places. I don't care for situations where everything I had so neatly planned out gets pitched into a pile somewhere else for a while. But in life, if we're patient enough to leave those piles be, if we're gutsy enough to try new ways of contorting ourselves through tight spots, if we can trust that there's a purpose to the messiness - we just might find something beautiful at the end. All too often though, we'd just rather live with the old issues that we've known were there for years, than to go through the work of ripping things apart to get to an unstained, soft heart. But, my friends, it just might be worth it.

I'll be glad when we're through with the carpet installation and all the rooms are put back. It's going to look so nice. If you happen to come by before we're done, don't be afraid to come in. Our door is still open. And in the meantime, if I seem angry at times or too pushy about getting my way, or somehow or another just don't live up to what they say a Christian should be like...I'm in the midst of a bit of construction work myself. Sorry if you see the mess, but I'm keeping the door open anyway. I'm hoping when it's all done I'll have a pretty great looking heart. It happens to be taking a little chaos inside to get there.

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