An ugly mess is a work in progress

This has been a very busy week…and next week will be even busier…and then the week after that, the kids and I leave for Maine. Whew!  I have several bus trips coming up, including four days working for Piedmont College. The Handy Man and Little Princess are headed to GAP again next week. Add in various appointments and standing obligations, and I will have to remind myself to breathe.

Old pop corn Ceiling                          new painted ceiling

A daughter of a friend recently started her own blog about her adventures as a new airline stewardess, and today she posted about the need to be kind to oneself.  It was  a very insightful thought from a young woman (early 20’s) and I started to think about how hard I am on myself so often.

Over the last year, I had fallen off the Trim Healthy Mama wagon and found myself plunged deep into the grasp of sugar and caffeine addiction. I have also been having a good bit of joint pain–mostly in my wrists and fingers, but also in my knees.  I am hoping those things are all related.  I have been trying to get myself back on track. In addition to gaining back a good bit of the weight I had done so well to lose, I have been dealing with back problems. My chiropractor moved to Florida in December (how dare he retire when I needed him?!) and the new guy is just not quite as skilled. I have actually been seeing two chiropractors–one that can work on my lower back and the replacement guy who uses the instrument to get the subtle areas of my upper back and neck.  My back has  been slowly improving–just in time to go to Maine and sleep on some really awful beds…but I digress….

A few nights ago I slept in a wrong position, and I woke up with my neck in terrible pain. My C2 is out, and that affects my upper thoracic. It is hard to turn my head.

All this would not be such an issue, but I am desperately trying to get my room painted!  The first step was the ceiling, which I accomplished with the help of my mother. I painted it last week. Now, I am working on taking the strips off the wall joints, and taping and putting mud on them. (Not actual mud—joint compound–for those who may not know.)  There are tons of holes in the walls, too….and of course they need to be filled. I was using a small blade, but the Handy Man went to the shed and got me the professional tools after I asked. The corners are the most frustrating for me, but I am getting the hang of it.  I needed the Handy Man to take out some useless phone jacks (from when our house was an office many, many years ago.)

IMG_5190

old jacks out…patch in place under the window

Here’s the thing about mudding walls: It takes time. You have to put the tape on and do the first coat, then sand, then the second coat, then sand, and then the third coat.  It takes time and patience.  You cannot rush it. You have to allow each coat to dry before you sand it. When it is all done, the wall is smooth and ready for paint. But it takes time to get there.  I struggle to let it dry before I sand, and then I want it perfect in one or two coats. But that is NOT how it works.

And that is not how we work, either. God is smoothing us out, taking the worldly and ungodly edges off us…and it takes time. The Bible says that He who began a good work in us WILL bring it to completion in the day of Jesus. In other words…He began the good work, and he is working on each of His own…and that work will not be done until Jesus comes back or we go home.  The Father will complete the work, and it takes a lifetime.

I should be glad my walls will only take about three coats. Thankfully that job will be done soon. Even if I only get part of the walls done before I leave for Maine, it will be completed when I get home.  My own sanctification is taking a bit longer.

It’s an ugly mess right now!

And that leads me to where I began: I fell off the wagon, but I am back on it. I have been exercising again (T-Tapp and Praise Moves, alternating days) and eating the way I know I need to eat to feel better.  I am trying to be kind to myself and remind myself that I am worth so much to the Father that He sent his Son to rescue me. I am redeemed, even when I fall off the wagon…and dearly, dearly loved. It is worth it to take care of myself, to do the hard things and make the better choices.

So, here is to being kind to ourselves and to the ugly mess that we are while we are being sanctified. Can I get an amen?

Works in progress: Grace needed for both!

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