For 6+ months, the 4 year old has been in charge of unloading the dishwasher each day. We started slowly with the silverware. Then added stacking all the plates and cups onto the counter and now have progressed to then getting onto the counter to put them away in the cupboard ONE AT A TIME.
See, as a veteran dishwasher unloader, I have learned the the safest and best tactics for unloading, stacking, and putting away the fragile dishes. As a mama, I am imparting this wisdom onto our kids, as per my job description (see Deuteronomy 6:5-9).
However, as a fellow sinner, the 4 year old took it upon herself to do it her own way today, which she honestly believed was ok. Not just ok but safe. Not just safe but BEST. Taking a handful of bowls and placing them on the 2nd shelf of the cupboard…and you all know what came next. The crash.
As I enter the scene, looking something similar to this,
You’d think I would be meditating on the verse that Lydia just text me, “Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth” – 1 John 3:18
But no, I was grieving my beautiful green bowls that lay in pieces all over the counter on top of the other clean dishes and all over the ground where my 1 year old was headed as he crawled. I yelled. I banned the children from the kitchen. I mourned, silenty. I cleaned and swept and threw away the bowls. I put away dishes and swept again and double checked so no tiny toe would be cut by a minuscule shard of what once was a pretty green bowl. I boiled a little. And I realized that I handled that situation really poorly.
And God brought to mind His spin on this whole situation. Isn’t it just like us to make such a mess of ourselves, our situations, and our lives when we, in a brief moment of proud confidence and selfish ambition, try to do it our own way? The way we think is ok? And safe? And BEST? And look at how quickly we can make it all a mess. A mess that we are incapable of cleaning up ourselves. A mess that God so lovingly uses for us, in spite of us and out of love for us.
God does this
out of our mess. Out of our shattered pieces His light most certainly will shine through.
Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
– 2 Corinthians 12:9-11