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Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Secret Art of Dust Bunnies

Saturday is my cleaning day. For the most part if it doesn't get cleaned on Saturday...  it doesn't get cleaned. With two dogs in the house and one the size of a miniature horse, dusting is a never ending job (yet I usually manage only to do it on Saturday). Quiet often as I dust my mind wonders back to a woman I used to go to church with. She was my Sunday School teacher when I first married and moved to town. She was older and was a very mellow, unpretentious soul. After the birth of my second child she dropped by the house to visit with me and to see the baby. I've never been fond of "drop in"
company, but it really didn't matter to me what the house looked like when she came, because she just wasn't the type to cast judgement on a young mother's housekeeping skills and I was very comfortable around her. As we visited, I amusingly watched as she unconsciously doodled in the dust with her index finger.  The whole time we chatted, she just casually made little circles and zigzags in the dust on my end table. This memory ALWAYS makes me smile, because typically I would have been mortified to allow anyone in the house with dust thick enough to play in. I've always looked at that experience as to how safe I felt being less than perfect around her. One evening this weekend I noticed one of my glass topped tables had a little dust that was being perfectly highlighted by the setting sun's rays peeking through my west windows. Every evening, during that narrow window of opportunity, if I wonder into my living room, the imperfections of my table tops and hardwood floors are magnified. I can clean all day Saturday, but if I wait to do that one room at just the right time, I will see things that I could never see during broad daylight (when I'm full of energy and get-up-and-go). No, the sun has to wait until my
energy has been drained to shine the light on the one little spot I missed. I feel like when I'm at my lowest of lows, Christ comes in to shine a light on those dang little dust bunnies that are causing me trouble. I'm sure he waits until I'm exhausted from "doing things on my own", so I'm too tired to argue or resist his recommendations. Just like my former Sunday School teacher, he does it without pretense or harm, and with a very mellow voice. If it wasn't for these times in my life, I would most likely become comfortable with my little bunnies and allow them to run amok, they would become my "pet" issues, hidden but very much present and accounted for. Don't get me wrong, I don't want just anyone knocking down my door and handing me a laundry list of my flaws, although God knows there are plenty and those in them self could take a century worth of blogs. But regardless of how painful God's chore list can be, in time, I have to smile when he does it in his loving way and whispers to my heart..... "You know Jac, you really might want to take a look at this." We all have dust bunnies tucked under the bed and it is easier to point out someone else's dust bunnies then to get down on my hands and knees and clean up my own (it's kind of like being an armchair quarterback). Personally, I have to stop, drop and roll at the temptation to point my critical finger at someone else. It's tempting for me not to highlight someone else's faults... Because let's face it, my own faults seem to dull if I'm shining the light under someone else's couch.  I made it a point to let my old friend to know what an impact she had on my life. As she was dying with cancer I sent her roses along with a letter relating the memory I still cherish today. Her family later told me how much she enjoyed knowing that she had made a difference in not only how I view my dust bunnies, but other people's dust bunnies as well. You never know how your unintended words or meaningless gestures can change a persons perspective (in a good way, or in a bad way). But I double dog dare you to ask my dust bunnies.... They know.

Matthew 7:3 

    “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?

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