Last night around midnight, I finished up the last of the day's household chores. I wanted to stay up and get them done so I could have a fresh start tomorrow with everything checked off the list. With the reward of "being done" firmly fixed in my mind, I washed the dishes from my late-night pizza crust baking for guests that would arrive tomorrow and tackled one of my least favorite jobs--scrubbing the toilet and bathtub and taking out the trash.
Liam woke up at 5 this morning and decided to start the day. I attempted to help him help him get back to sleep for two hours with no luck. So, we proceeded with breakfast. I opened a can of prunes (aka controlled mess) depitted and spread them all over his high chair tray, along with a lots of pieces of mushy banana. Liam LOVES prunes and he loves feeding himself. And the prunes loved him if attachment is any sign of affection. Every inch of grinning Liam was covered in prunes and banana by the end of the meal.
I gave him a bath in the freshly cleaned tub, too tired to even grimace about the potential impact on the cleaning I had just done. Bathing dirty little boys are what tubs are made for!
Not more than two hours into our day, the sink is now full of breakfast dishes, the freshly cleaned tub coated with a layer of prunes and banana. Thank goodness the trash can is at least filling again slowly.
And I must clean those things before lunch!
I am struck by the power of the things that must be done again and again.
Days like this sometimes make me want to throw in my scrub brush. What's the point? It will all just get messy again right away. I remember a friend (mother of five) once said to me. "You have to think of cleaning a house with children like removing layers. Yes, the freshly mopped floor may have a glass of juice spilled on it within seconds, but it is at least one layer less dirty than it would have been."
So true!! And the more I think about it, there is something beautiful in the service of things that must be done again. They are a quiet service to my family, a part of the fiber of our home. Think of the constancy and beauty in breathing, sunsets, whispered prayers,waking up--all must be done again and again.
I consider God's mercy as he disciplines me and guides me and forgives me and over and over listens to my prayers. He doesn't neglect me just because he has "been there done that." He is a constant of unconditional love.
So as I head for the bathroom to remove a couple layers from the tub, I smile to myself. I'm thankful for the reminder that God is an expert on things that need doing again and again and I'm so glad He is. Maybe when these chores are "done," I'll find myself reflecting a little bit more of Him.