When I used to drive by an unkempt yard, a run down house or ran into an untidy person, I would think, “Goodness! Don’t they care about their yard, home or appearance? They need to do better! I would NEVER let my (fill in the blank) look like that.”
I don’t do that anymore.
Because I’ve learned that there are all kinds of reasons a body may not be busy mowing a lawn, painting a porch or even putting on matching socks.
And when it does, it demands all my energy, effort and attention. I don’t have the time or luxury of worrying about things that aren’t absolutely necessary for survival.
When Dominic left for Heaven, my priorities were immediately shaken out, sifted and re-ordered. Not only the big ones-like spending more time with the people I loved-but also the smaller ones-like whether or not I swept the front porch before someone visited.
More than four years later and I look around sometimes wishing I was better at keeping up with things, better able to tidy up, decorate for the seasons, mend the fences, stay on top of clutter, or put together decent outfits.
But then I pause, breathe and realize that while the outside looks messy and unorganized and not at all like I’d prefer, my inside is focused on the things that really matter.
I am spending most of my time caring (one way or another) for other hearts.
Now when I see someone’s home that needs attention or someone who isn’t put together, I think, “What battle are they facing? What life circumstance has swallowed up their time, energy, and emotional reserves?”
Because life happens.
Whether we are ready for it or not.