Loving the Mess Maker

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By:  Betty Predmore

My frustration is at its limit and I am nearing the end of my patience! Why, oh why, can’t this girl do what I ask her to do?

I have spent my entire weekend trying to get my youngest to clean her room. She has spent hours in there without fully accomplishing the task. Once I went in and found her playing jacks in the floor. Another time, she snuck into her brothers’ room to play. When we went to bed on Saturday night, it was getting close to clean, but by Sunday afternoon, it was a mess again. Now, as I go in to wake her up for school, clothes are everywhere and things I just washed are lying in the floor. Not a good way to start our Monday morning.

As I vent my frustrations to my husband, he gently reminds me of the problems this sweet girl carries through her life. She is a victim of a pretty serious case of attention deficit due to her birth mother’s bad habits. She comes from a background of abandonment. So while it is easy for me to look only at her flaws on this difficult Monday morning, I must have compassion and remember why she is the way she is, and all the reasons why I love her.

Isn’t that what God does for us? He looks past those issues and personality traits that make us difficult, and He concentrates on why He loves us. He forgives us of so much more than clothes on the floor or messy rooms. He has compassion for our “baggage” and is the light in our dark journey. It is because He loves me so very well that I can love this little master of messes so much. “We love because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19)

So today I make a choice….hold a grudge and have an attitude against a little girl who is dealing with so much, or love her the way Jesus loves me…unconditionally, despite my flaws, with forgiveness, with compassion. Yes, I can do that! Yes, God gives me the ability to look past the mess to the masterpiece He created when He formed this precious child. What a gift He has given this family! What a precious treasure!

Help me today, Lord, to consider this gift. Help me to love as You do and to have the heart of compassion for others that You do for me. Give me a smile, Lord, when I feel like crying. Through You, I can conquer my frustrations. Through You, I can have compassion and understanding. Through You, I can love this little mess maker. Amen.

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