26 November 2010

About that mess in the kitchen

You know the great and glorious mess that graces many a kitchen after the Thanksgiving feast? The perilously piled platters, scattered scraps, and greasy flotsam? And you know how everyone’s totally OK with it, because that’s just the way a kitchen looks after it’s been used to cook a bunch of food from scratch so that a lotta people can gather round the table together for prayer and feasting?

Well, as it so happens, there are quite a few days around here when I prepare a bunch of food from scratch so that a lotta people can gather round the table together for prayer and feasting. So while my kitchen disaster-zone rating might only make it up to Thanksgiving levels a couple times a year, there are days a-plenty when it registers in the red. (And given the few-and-fleeting moments in which I have two hands free lately, it’d be miraculous if the kitchen were clean even if I had fewer mouths to feed or made less from scratch.) I think I’ve said it before, but I’ve been thinking it again of late: Flylady, I do admire your initiative (even if I find your perennial perkiness daunting) and I gladly would shine my sink, every single day…if only I could find it.

This too: Our Savior graciously invites us to gather round His own table for prayer and feasting—and I don’t need to look beyond my own heart to know that the corners of the linoleum haven’t all received a proper scrubbing. Nevertheless, the Supper is wondrously nourishing, and beautifully served to all comers. Life’s messiness lurks around the edges of the table but cannot diminish the joy of the feast. Someday, oh Some Day, we will gather around that table with hearts whose creeping mildew has finally been banished forever.

And you know what? I’m thinking that even our Heavenly kitchens will feature glorious post-feast mess. So if you can find your sink today, go ahead and shine it. But if you can’t, don’t fret it. Revel instead in the present and eternal joy of the feast.


Melrose said...

well said. I looked up that flylady link...wow...she seems to have a lot of time on her hands. My sanity was stripping the kids bedrooms down to nothing but beds, dressers, and a bookshelf. All toys go down into the basement. Our stairs are a laundry shoot for toys :) We do a quick clean by running around upstairs and throwing/dropping toys down the stairs to the playroom :D I'm amazed but nothing has ever broken! So the bedrooms are super easy to keep clean with just a quick clean every day to pick up books off the floor and the upstairs is very minimal too so it's easy. The basement....we don't go there ;)

But then this past week I bought 12 cardboard boxes with lids to put away toys in and keep in the storage room. Now I can rotate toys in and out so the playroom isn't so overwhelming :)

But my sink. ha. I loved this post.

lisa said...

I always appreciate those little signs in people's houses that say, "Bless this mess." :)

Cheryl said...

The sign in my kitchen says "I kiss better than I cook." So true.

I also kiss better than I clean. And better than a bunch of other things, too. :-)

Rebekah said...

>>there are quite a few days around here when I prepare a bunch of food from scratch so that a lotta people can gather round the table together for prayer and feasting


Gauntlets said...

Additional good point about the mildew. I hate mildew.

Anonymous said...

I found this post very inspiring. I live in a house filled with a lot of little brothers and sisters and as a very ocd perfectionist I sometimes find the constant messes a hard cross to bear. But really, a clean house shouldn't be an idol. My mom and dad always say there are things that are so much more important! So what if the laundry piles to the ceiling, and the dishes are exploding from the sink like lava from a volcano? The little guys won't be young forever and soon the messes will get smaller. But for now, it's more important that their stomachs are filled and that they receive the attention that I really feel like giving to the dishes. It's also a great comfort to look forward to the gathering at Heavenly table, where the 'mildew of our sinful hearts," will not be invited. ;)

Thanks for the post.