Monday, July 15, 2013

i confess my mess

i am a mess...a complete and utter mess.

no, i'm not going through a crisis.  i'm just stating the truth.  

i. am. a. mess.

i know that all of the time.  i look that reality dead in the eyes some of the time {cringe, cringe}.

did i ever tell you the story about the time that my house got robbed when i was in high school?  

my family was out of town on christmas vacation and when we returned my parents had to meet with the detective in charge of our case.  with great concern he told my mom how absolutely terrible he felt about the condition in which the robbers had left my room.  

ummm...actually it looked the same as when i left. i said...a mess.

it's one thing to admit that you don't have it all together and then it's a whole other thing when people see your complete mess in all it's glory.

like at my disastrous dinner party last weekend...

the food wasn't ready so i was running around the kitchen like a mad woman leaving a ridiculous trail of dirty dishes behind on every surface.

instead of being fully engaged in conversations the way i like to be, i was preoccupied with how many eggs i still needed to mix into the casserole which led me to annoyingly ask my guests to restart their stories a bazillion times.

the grass was cut and the yard was looking all pretty so the kids could frolick about and the parents could relax in the fresh air...then the bottom fell out.  as the rain poured down we were confined to the house and our six-person dining table with my kids climbing the walls and using our guests as jungle gyms {literally}.

and speaking of know how you hear people say of their kids...

there they go - makin' me proud.

well i more often say of my kids...

there they go - makin' me humble.

neither one of my kids had a nap that day so they were in rare form and my three year old has recently entered into some kind of wild animal, terrorizing phase...lovely.

and it would have been one thing if all that running around had produced a delicious gourmet meal.  but no...the chicken was dry, the casserole was undercooked, and the rest was...well...whatever...

i could go on...but i won't.  i'm sure i have already lost all credibility with you.

have you ever felt so completely disappointed in yourself that you didn't know if you could ever move on?  you needed a do-over right then and there to make up for the epic failure you just experienced.

well...that's how i was feeling after my dinner party.

and the worst part of this scene was...they were new friends.  and new friends don't know that your kitchen sink isn't always overflowing with dirty dishes

and that your chicken is usually moist and tasty,
and your kids actually love each other and act civil towards one another most some of the time.

in situations like these, if you are anything like me, your mind just keeps mulling over every horrible detail and how you wish you could go back in time and do it differently.  and why didn't you just put some frozen sweet potato fries in the oven instead of trying that new recipe?  and by the way...i think we need to completely revamp our discipline strategy for the kids because they suddenly appear to have absolutely no social skills whatsoever. maybe i am over-reacting a tad, but these situations just leave you feeling so completely inadequate.

and, guess what?  my mess isn't confined to sub-par hospitality.  i also mess up relationships and opportunities and all kinds of other stuff.

there's this amazing freedom in humility and inadequacy.  have you found it?  
if not, keep looking for's there.

you know how they say 'you can't put lipstick on a pig'?  {they do say that, don't they?}

well...sometimes there's not enough make-up in the world to cover up the messes we make with our lives.  

so let's put the mascara down.

when i am faced with a situation like that disastrous dinner, my pity party eventually comes to an end and i am reminded of the holy miracle that is my life.

i have accomplished a lot of important things in my 30+ years.  some don't really matter anymore - like being the president of my sorority.  but some have eternal value - like helping couples turn their backs on divorce.  when i consider the impact my messy, jacked-up life has had on others i can't help but believe in an amazing, powerful, almighty God.  

and there it is...the freedom.

the freedom to be a far-from-perfect mess and to still be miraculously used by a perfect God.

whew!  what a relief.

got any messes you want to confess?