Maybe it was all that cleaning I did growing up for my parents (most of which I did for earned money in my high school years), maybe it was the adjustment of working full-time after college in those "entering the real world" years, maybe it was having my 1st baby and then- oh yeah- sanely deciding to get my master's degree not long after, or maybe it was having my 2nd baby who put me over the edge for awhile.... whatever it may be that gradually made my priority of organizing my house very low on the list, that is where it is.
Let me vulnerably let you into the inner workings of my literal current mess. Seriously. I took these pictures tonight.
Here is the office area which I must say looks slightly better this week than the previous 5 months because I forced myself to go through piles I had on the floor last week. But now the general scatter over everything has replanted itself.
Above is the main "catch-all" closet in our house which we can barely walk through at times. It is especially fun for Reuben to have to get into the attic space when the closet is cluttered like this. It's his favorite job.
Kids craft (aka: throw whatever somewhat creative-like thing they have on it) table. And this is in the corner of our dining room.
Oh yeah, this is the hook Alena's backpack should be hanging on, but with her first day ever riding the bus today, she naturally forgot her backpack on the bus at the beginning of the day. So there are those kind of messes to figure out that are more urgent than the mess of my house.
Not to mention these two still awake an hour after I tucked them in bed still nowhere near wanting to sleep. Oh and their mattresses on the ground and their room a chaotic mess while we are in the progress of making their "new" room across the hall.
General random toy messiness, most of which are too young for their ages but they still enjoy...
Scribble chalk left on the kids' easel downstairs.
A comforter drying for the millionth time after another bed-wetting.
General shoe pile-up. Hey- at least I'm trying with the shoe tray.
Catch-all clutter corner on my kitchen counter.
And that bookshelf that keeps hoarding random books and papers.
If you are still reading, I'm impressed, thanks for hanging in there with me. I have moments that I can't take it anymore. That I look around me and sit and cry at the chaos. But then I go to bed, feel better in the morning, and don't do much about it. Because in the messiness of life, there is always something more important to deal with. There is that appointment to schedule, that lunch to pack, that bill to pay, that e-mail to send.... all the things that make life actually happen. There is charting to be done at home late at night after a long day of work when the kids have gone to bed. There is trying to feed my family well by shopping for, cooking, and baking healthy foods. Then there is that friend to text or call or have coffee with. There are cuddles & kisses with my girls, the reading of books and crafts and baked goods. The glass of wine and conversation on the deck at night with Reuben. The trying to take care of my body and soul with a solid run and time in the Word.
There is so much room for work in me, both in the messiness of my heart and the messiness of my home. Maybe there is a connection there that I'm missing. But I try to remind myself that life is about embracing the messiness, to come as I am and be who I am. This doesn't mean embracing sin, but finding joy despite the imperfections I have because of the grace God has lavished on me. That doesn't mean I shouldn't strive to develop healthy habits (including maintaining a more organized home), but what matters is how Jesus sees me. He doesn't care one bit how my house looks if my heart is in all the wrong places. He doesn't care how organized I have things or if I'm up on the latest house trends. He wants my heart. He wants Reuben's heart. He wants the hearts of my daughters. He wants the hearts of my friends, my family, and all of us. I'm preaching to myself here. I can't take any of this with me someday when I die. It won't matter how big my house is, how much money I have, or if I have all those old photos perfectly organized. What will matter is if my life pointed to Jesus. If I invited others in despite the messiness, if I showed my kids that they matter to me more than stuff... and ultimately, if my heart is surrendered in faith and obedience to Jesus.
So this post isn't a cry for help to organize, nor is it a "Look at me, I'm fine with dealing my messy house because I care about more important things." It is therapeutic for me to write about and simply an honest part of my life that I have tension over and usually battle to let go of. I don't have it together and I know you don't either. And I'm so thankful that Jesus overlooked the worst or my sins and the pettiest of my downfalls to love me and die for me (and you) just as I am.