So-one morning this week I woke up after a long night of canning and stumbled out into the kitchen...and the light hit the window just right...just enough for me to get grossed out.
If you have been in my house as a guest you can assume that I am a neat freak...if you have been in my house on a normal day--you would see a different spectacle.
So-to impress ya....
Ah, I will have a candle burning!!!! (to mask the smell from the ridiculously stinky chore jeans that are fermenting somewhere...)
The floors will be swept!!! (to pick up the trails of cow pies, crud and general farm dirt from 3 farm boys & 2 farm girls and the 50 toes that wear dirty socks...not to mention our dear puppy Louise.)
The dust is off of the furniture!!! (it's actually NOT normal suburban dust-- but rather a protective covering of barn bedding that wafted in--because I left the windows open when they hauled manure from the barn...um...yeah.)
The dishes are done!!! (actually-they just got stuffed into the dishwasher 5 minutes before you arrived-and everything was dried on cause it sat on the counter overnight...or longer.)
The bathroom is spotless!!! (um...3 boys and a hired guy...enough said.)
I'm not joking--the struggle is real.
So it is with each one of us--the storefront looks pretty good. I am sure yours does too.
But when it comes right down to the nitty gritty--there is not a whole lot that is desirable if you look close enough.
We all do it.
We have Facebook to polish and protect an image.
But underneath all of the smiles-all of the laughter--candles, caked on make-up and cleaning spray--all of the Sunday morning formalities-lays a broken and wounded soul that is in desperate need of
GRACE. FOR. OTHERS.
GRACE. FROM. OTHERS.
GRACE. FOR. SELF.
GRACE. FROM. GOD.
My window looked fine until the morning light hit it just right...
poof. no more pretending.
...and when His light hits our hearts just right...well...poof. no. more. pretending.
What would life look like if we began the journey of
Living a REAL life.
really broken--really forgiven
Clean up jobs.
being. really. broken.
being. real. with. ourselves.
being. real. with. others.
God is working to show us where we fix our eyes on ourselves and not on HIM. Grace is a bloody yet beautiful thing.
"In Christ's death I found grace. Grace to be a sinner. Grace to not measure up. Grace for people around me to disappoint me. Grace for my kids and my husband to be human. It is important we understand the reason why we can be imperfect. We don't have to try to measure up or pretend because God rescued us from that impossible pursuit through the blood of Christ. Those of us who have been rescued by God have nothing to prove. We can call sin what it is because our sin has been paid for, cared for. We rest in who we are and what God has accomplished for us...Grace frees me from having to measure up to the impossible standard, while at the same time, grace motivates me to run from sin and obey God."
~ Stuck by Jennie Allen (pg.25)
So where do we go from here.
I know I am broke.
I know I can't fix myself.
No matter how clean my kitchen window can get-tomorrow it will get dirty again.
No matter how many times you try to keep it together it will fall apart.
So-where do we go from here?
We embrace our brokenness--surrender it to the healing power of Jesus Christ--and watch how
GRACE. SWEET GRACE. transforms.
WE GO TO THE CROSS...COMPLETELY.
Instead of striving for perfection in our lives..
ah-resting in HIS perfection in my place.
Instead of pursuing the illusive golden key to happiness...
ah-be filled with HIS JOY.
Instead of complaining about my circumstances...
ah-praise HIM for my blessings
Instead of striving for the good life...
ah-sweet surrender to the One who gives eternal life.
Living a wounded life is no life at all.
rest- peace- joy-
that you have needed
lay them down
for something far better.
Grace is a Person.
In surrendering-you will find that Jesus Christ is more than enough to heal the wounds.
Somehow surrender works a lot like Windex. I washed my kitchen window...and today-I can see more clearly. I get a bigger picture...and I get changed.
May God fill you with HIS GRACE as you come before Him with your broken places...completely.