Anyone who knows me knows I’m…what’s the word my kids would use…particular about certain things. Okay, most everything. Angles of furniture. Pillow arrangements on beds. Vacuum lines in the carpet. Balance in a room, every room. For many, the household junk drawer is a necessary evil. For me, it’s just an evil. The batteries belong in the upper left quadrant and should not roll over to the black and gold sharpie space. Is anyone else like this? Space is a gift. We’re supposed to use it wisely. I imagine in Heaven I’ll be in charge of painting signs for the neighborhood and organizing Jesus’ shoes (I doubt He will have a junk drawer – that’s kinda silly!) But if He does…

Smells are also a thing under my special dome. I treat myself on a frequent basis to bliss candles and those nifty little sachets from Kirklands that make you feel like you’ve just stepped onto a warm, sandy beach next to a cool, breezy ocean when in reality, you’re just in my foyer. Isn’t that a cool trick? I think so! I buy Bounce Fresh Linen fabric softener sheets for the experience; the experience of washing my favorite, soft grey blanket (even though it just got washed yesterday), drying it with 7 sheets, turning down the AC to 67 or so, and then curling up on the couch for a little TV or a nap. My laundry room floor is covered with dryer sheets that fall from the clothes when we get them out of the dryer. I leave them on the floor because I can’t help myself; it just smells so good in there. Please don’t ask to curl up in my blanket when it’s fresh out of the dryer. Please. If I give it to you willingly, then that’s different. It means you have crossed an invisible threshold and I probably love you. Or I’ve had a moment of big-heartedness. Otherwise…find your own dang blanket.

Last week I noticed something out of place. It was a weird smell. Thinking Gemma put cheese or something in the trash can (instead of the sink to be properly disposed of; she has so much to learn, bless her tiny heart) I took out all the trashes. It didn’t go away. We left that afternoon for a few hours, thinking it would eventually dissipate, because sometimes bad smells just need time to go away. It didn’t. Ugh. The next morning when I went to make my coffee, still there. It totally ruined my coffee experience that day. Be glad you weren’t here to witness that! I sent Corky a text with red hearts and a cute little hotel emoji and he said NO, so that meant I had to deal with it.

What in the world is that smell??

Have you ever tried to fix something but couldn’t find the origin or root of the problem? Because that’s where fixing things has to start. The stinky, smelly, rotten root. The place where right things turned south and went terribly wrong.

In retrospect, I’m grateful for my nose and sense of smell, as horrible as smells can sometimes be. I’m glad that it still alerts me when things aren’t right. I’d hate to have guests come over with me cooking in my blissfully beachy kitchen, and all the while they’re thinking that I’m a terrible housekeeper because of a stupid smell coming from the sink. They would never come back and I’d blame it all on the chicken spaghetti (or Corky), completely unaware of the truth: there’s a stench that I haven’t dealt with. And worse yet, don’t even notice anymore because it’s been there for so long.

Why God would use an unpleasant odor to spot check my heart doesn’t matter; I’m glad He did. A new sparring partner has showed up on our doorstep in the last few weeks and I haven’t handled it well. I hate fighting. I’ve found myself “worrying my prayers” and instead of it calming my heart, it’s giving me anxiety. It’s also put a wedge between me and my Father because it’s slowly deteriorating my trust in His purpose, His plan, and His unfailing love over my life and the ones I hold close in my heart. He keeps reminding me to cast my cares on Him, and when I don’t…it just stinks. Really, really bad.

I am not in control.

He is.

 

I cannot change hearts.

He can.

 

I cannot keep my eyes on the circumstances 24/7. I need sleep.

He not only can, He does. 24/7. Go to sleep, mama.

 

I cannot see the future.

Thank goodness. It’s going to be ok. Learn to trust again in the One who is already there, and believe again that He is paving the way. He will not rest, nor slumber, nor forsake us. His watchful eye is always upon us. He doesn’t take naps! And He will never stop loving us. Seek Him, abide in Him, rest in Him.

This week I read somewhere that one second of God’s love is more than a lifetime of mine. Whoa! It all comes back to that. Love and trust, trust and Love. Oh, what welcomed relief, what blessed assurance, what blissful peace. I needed to hear that.

Today, we fight. We pray. We trust. And then we rest. Our new sparring partner is still here, but the smell has gone away.

 

 

 

 

 

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