Monday 1 December 2014

God's way, the high way {making beauty, from the mess}

Today was the day.

The day I had been busily planning for, for weeks.

Today was December the first.  The day we would start our month of giving. All of our fun activities.

Our giving.

Our focussing on the Saviour.

The greatest Gift of all.

It wasn't quite the day I had planned.

We all slept in, then the children had jobs to do, then I had jobs to do.

Before I knew it, it was only 30 minutes until lunch.  I wanted, desperately, to start well, so we read our scripture, and we read our "Giving" challenge for today.  We were planning to make a gift for some family we are visiting.

We also planned to sort the clothes from last season, to get stored away, and thin out what we had, to give to charity, when we put them away in boxes.  It was a job we planned to begin today, but knew it wouldn't get finished until Wednesday. That was fine.  The boys brought it all to the dining room, and the girls sorted it out.  Success!

I planned to read Jotham's Journey in the evening, before bed.  I had it all organised, in my mind. My mother-in-law also gave us an Advent Candle, that we planned to light whilst we read.

The afternoon held a trip out to the shops.  I needed some craft supplies for our home-ed group on Thursday, and we needed to pick up some new shirts for the boys, for our photo session tomorrow.  As with all plans involving a trip out with eight children, it never takes as little time as you expect.  ALWAYS more.  We had a lovely wander around The Range, but it just took longer than I planned.  By the time we got home, it was almost time for dinner, so the craft didn't get started.

Dinner, clear up, messing around, and FINALLY we began the craft activity, whilst I read Jotham's Journey.

Candle lit, reading started - then began the interruptions.

Children asking for help with the craft, little ones getting tired and cranky, and me not being very patient.  Then I noticed the time, when my patient husband phoned, wondering when he should come home to eat.... it was 8pm!

So, Jotham was paused , and I told them we would read extra tomorrow.

Then came teeth brushing, children crying and having accidents, and finally, bed.

It was not the way I planned it.  There had been tears, tantrums, impatience, and a complete deviation from things being the way I hoped.

It was messy.

It was imperfect.

It was REAL.

Yet, there was still beauty at the end of it all.  We had still learnt of God, and His plan for salvation.  We had thought upon giving and generosity.  Seeds were sown in their hearts.

We had created gifts, that I KNOW the recipients will love, because they were created by children, longing to love others.

There was mess, and plans which didn't work, but beauty came, in spite of my plans failing.

It pointed me to my Saviour.

It pointed me to a truth I read, just this morning.

"Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD,he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. 
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts."
Isaiah 55:7-9

Our lives our ruined by sin.  All our ways are nothing, because the imperfection of sin taints them.  No matter how hard we try, we will fail.  We are sinners by nature, and our heart is inclined toward sin and self.

Yet, God has mercy.  He ABUNDANTLY pardons. He makes beauty, out of our mess.


Because His thoughts and ways are so much higher than ours, in that place that forgives, despite what our puny minds can understand. It's not dependant on our perfection, but upon His greatness, mercy and grace.

Despite our messy, broken days, we can start again the next day, back on track, because He abundantly pardons.  We turn from our sins, turn our back on what we have done - on the mess, the failings, and the imperfections - and start over again, through His ways, higher than ours. Through His mercy.

Oh, how thankful I am, that despite the mess I can make, and the days, spiritually, which don't turn out how I planned, God's ways are higher.

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