Last week I was cleaning out my fridge, bidding the last of the Christmas feast goodbye, when I discovered an awful mess under the bottom drawer. I don’t know how long it had been there, but wow! It looked like it had history and it was planning on sticking around. (Pun intended!) As I scrubbed and scrubbed, I thought about how it happens sometimes that there is an awful mess just below the surface, but until it is brought to the light we are completely oblivious. Last Sunday after church, one of our families went home to be confronted with a terrible odor in the house. When they traced it to the source, it ended up revealing a serious plumbing leak that resulted in the need to tear out flooring and walls and completely rework their bathroom. Suddenly what looked okay when they left for church was transformed into a huge home repair project stamped Urgent!
I imagine by now you’re wondering what this has to do with what God is saying to us this week, so I’ll cut to the chase: our Father God is not afraid of a mess. He doesn’t mind making a big stink, ripping up the floor, or tearing out the walls. In fact, He thinks it’s a great thing, because unlike our human tendency to sweep the issues under the rug, keep our secrets, and ignore the blinking lights on our relational switchboards, He is all about getting down to the heart of the matter and dealing with things. Now, timing is important. It wouldn’t make much sense to go knocking holes in the wall looking for problems. Some of us are wired to ignore the warning signs, while others of us go looking for trouble and end up causing it. When it is time to act, God knows how to make it clear that an immediate response is required. When that time comes, it may look like a disaster has occurred but in reality it is a blessing because now that the problem has been brought to the light, it can be repaired and restored. The process is usually expensive, time-consuming, and requires a lot of hard work, but the result is something wonderful.
Many of us are facing areas in our lives that look like giant messes. It is tempting to just put up the yellow caution tape, shut the door and run, but God has called us to wade in to the mess and deal with it in His strength and wisdom. He will give us what we need to finish the job. He is faithful to see every project He starts through to the finish.
Abba Father, we commit our works to You. Please fill us with Your Spirit and let Your joy be our strength as we tackle the hard tasks in front of us. Please enable us to receive Your love and love You more. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
“And your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to dwell in.” Isaiah 58:12 (English Standard Version)