Not long ago, I cleaned my living room closet. It was beautiful. Everything organized, in its Mom-ordained place, easy to access. Beautiful, I tell you. I gazed on the work of my hands and allowed peace to wash over my soul.
I would take a photo of the closet to show you how far from bliss we have fallen since that glorious day, but I can no longer physically enter the closet. Also, the lightbulb burned out. What I can see in the dim abyss is that everything is in disarray, stray game pieces and puzzle pieces piled on a shelf and all sorts of oddments forming mountains on the floor, patiently awaiting the day I rescue the closet from its disorder.
Somewhere along the line, as far as I can tell, my children remembered the closet. They opened the math box, found the linking cubes, and couldn’t resist the allure of spaceships and machine guns waiting to be built. They challenged each other to Battleship and Scrabble and spent hours arranging letter tiles. And the art drawers… Heaven bless the child who can resist drawers of art supplies! (Seriously, such a child needs our fervent prayers!) I, too, am to blame, for in the rush of daily living, I tossed a few lonely shoes into the closet to save them from the big black monster who roams our house.
Bottom line, we’ve been living in this house, and the closet is the messy, unfiltered proof.
In the next few months, our church will be looking for a pastor. At some point, we’ll start talking about what sort of church we want to be. A family church? Will we take it a step further and say, (Heaven help us!), a missional church?
I’d love for everyone to come over and look at my living room closet. Right now. In its current, deplorable condition.
Life is messy.
Family is messier.
Missions is even messier.
Until you step back and look at the children building relationships, gaining confidence, creating works of heart-inspired art.
Until you recognize the God of Life in the midst of disheveled boxes, scraps of paper, and mismatched shoes.
Until you embrace the messy, realizing how gloriously our God works in the very middle of the messy to turn the unlovely into the lovely, to shape for Himself a people after His own heart.
I’ll clean my closet eventually. Until then, I’ll rejoice in the undeniable truth.
In the messy, beauty reigns.