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Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Short & Sweet: cleaning carpet grace

I rose early this morning because I forgot to turn the 5:30 alarm off from yesterday. Instead of falling back to sleep, my daughter also heard the alarm, and beckoned my attention. Tired and groggy, we made our way to the kitchen to eat breakfast and afterward I put her back in the crib for "quiet time" because she was in rare form. I wasn't in a very pleasant mood myself. I made my way back to the kitchen table and prayed that God would give me grace and mercy to get through the long day ahead and that I might show grace to my daughter.

An hour later, the dog decided that the family room downstairs was as good a place as any to take a dump. He never does this, so you can imagine the frustration. Meanwhile, my daughter is throwing a fit because she's over quiet time. I get her out of bed and take her downstairs with me. She hands me paper towels as I scrub stains out of the carpet. I wasn't feeling God's grace or mercy as I tried to avoid breathing in the stench made ten times more pungent by pregnancy.

I voiced my opinions to God as I cleaned the carpet with tested patience.

How is this grace on an already difficult and early morning with a thousand other things on the list to prepare for next week's vacation? Now I can't get the shopping done this morning because here I am trying to clean this carpet. Now nothing is going to go right today. My day is ruined! 

Sometimes my prayers to God, which are often in the form of a one-sided conversation, come across completely dramatic. Though impatient and frustrated, and though shopping would have to wait until after my daughter had her nap, grace happened. We made our way upstairs and I let her have a snack as I washed dishes. Sitting down her snack, something she rarely does, she walked over and blew kisses to me. I stopped washing dishes and bent down to blow kisses back, and that's when she spread out her little arms and wrapped them around my neck.

Today, that moment, was the first time she offered both a hug and a kiss voluntarily, and you bet my eyes were a little misty as I stood back up and continued washing dishes. This was grace, and how beautiful when God's grace is represented from the actions of a child.

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