Tuesday, April 26, 2011

"Well, that was easy!"

I'm cleaning this week.  Deep cleaning.  My house has been a bit...neglected...the last few months, and I have had enough!  This week is my first "official" stay at home mom week, and I am bound and determined to make the most of it!

Yesterday and this morning I surface cleaned the kitchen.  By surface clean, I mean that I moved everything out of the kitchen, swept and mopped, put everything back in a new arrangement, cleaned the counters, cleaned out and washed down the fridge...  Right.  It's "surface" cleaning because I haven't opened the cabinets yet.  I'm afraid to.

This afternoon, I started on the livingroom.  Again, it's "surface" cleaning.  I have a TON of "deep" cleaning I will be doing, as soon as I get this place livable again (it's really not THAT bad...but I can't remember the last time I vacuumed under the couch)!  Speaking of the couch, I did vacuum under it a few minutes ago.  I pulled it out (It's a sofa sleeper.  I had to use muscles.), de-toyed the underneath, vacuumed, and pushed it back.

And then Bugsy, from his perch atop the couch, said, "Well, that was easy!"

Bugsy is roughly 45 pounds of 3 year old.  Added to the couch's weight, that made it about...well...heavy.

So, this little interaction has me thinking, as they often do.  These kids...they inspire me.  And what I'm thinking about right now is how often we...how often I...do this very thing!

How many times have I sat and watched while someone else went through a particularly difficult situation, and at its conclusion thought to myself, "Well, that was easy!"  Maybe a friend was struggling though.  Maybe they were pushing against a huge, heavy weight, and I just sat back and grinned and thought, "This is the greatest ride ever!"  (Those were his words shortly before he proclaimed it an easy job.)

It made me laugh when Bugs said that to me.  When he sat on his couch-throne and proclaimed, "That was easy!"  It was funny because he's 3.  It was funny because he didn't know better.  It was funny because it was easy...for him.

But when I do it...when you do it...when we as adults do it...it's not so funny.  It can be devastating, humiliating, painful to the recipient of the comments.  I've felt it.  I'm sure I've done it.  It's not kind.  It's not fair.

I pray that I can have the compassion to see each of your struggles for what it truly is.  I pray that I will be able to get off my couch-perch and help you push the heavy things out of your way.  I pray that I can help you bear the burden, rather than watch from my own seat.  I pray that you'll forgive me for the times I've done the opposite!

Lord, please help me to see my friends' and families' struggles and burdens for what they really are.  Help me to see past their cheerful expressions to what they're really feeling.  Help me to show kindness and compassion.  Help me to carry their burdens.  Help me realize when I need to help them push the roadblocks out of the way.  Help me to never again sit back and say, "Well, that was easy," without taking into account what is really happening.  Lord, help me to see people and their struggles the way you see them.  Help me help them.


Misty said...

Wonderful post. Usually its things like entertaining talents that I look at and go "wow...they make that look esay!". However, when I had my son, I looked at my own mother and though, "WOW. She made mothering look SO EASY!" I truly have a new-found, deeper appreciation for my mother and am thankful that I have my husband here to help me. Very inspiring post. <3

Elizabeth said...

Thanks, Misty. You know...kids. They are inspiring. They're funny. They're very frequently wise beyond their years...which actually makes me wonder where, along the way, we lose that wisdom. :/ But thanks. I appreciate your kind words!

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