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Bring Your Mess

On this particular day I was in my toddler’s room encouraging him to help me clean up the mess. Slowly and patiently I observed him picking up, putting away, and sorting. He was figuring it out. He is still easily distracted so often I find myself having to redirect him back to pick up the mess. Once done with his room I made my way to my tween son’s room, and oh boy - what a mess! Hah. For him I simply reminded him to pick it up and that I’d check back in later.

As I walked away I couldn’t help but think of God’s view and role on our messes - the ones in our heart and mind. In some cases I think His presence is more obvious - like me with my toddler. He is there observing us patiently while holding our hand and redirecting our eyes so that they are fixed on Him. Psalm 55:22 reminds us:

“Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.”

But what happens when we don‘t feel His presence in our messes? The last year has taught me one thing in regards to that answer. God’s silence and your wondering where He is doesn’t mean He is not there or that He won’t clean/heal that mess up. In an article published by CrossWalk the author references Mark 9 where a believer, who struggled with a chronically-ill son, said to Jesus, “I believe; help my unbelief!”.

“Jesus did not berate the father for his believing unbelief! Jesus healed his child and we learn a dynamic lesson: some of the most faithful believers struggle with moments of intense doubt as a result of the adversities in life.”

How I dealt with my tween son’s messy room was very different than with my toddler. I knew confidently that he knew what to do in order to make his room clean again. And my son knew that no matter how much time passed I would come back to check and reward him for having cleaned it up.

God also presents Himself differently in each of our messes. In some situations He’ll hold your hand throughout all of it, and in some cases He simply has complete faith in you knowing you will eventually know what to do on your own - to surrender your messes to Him. And you can be reassured that He will be there, like he was for the man in Mark 9, to heal all of them.

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