This next one ended up being the day before my Momma passed, and God met me again in power…
What is it with God always using my Momma as a sermon prop?
I woke up in the middle of the night and saw that her light was still on, as was the TV. She’s been insisting on leaving them both on when she goes to bed lately, and my brother must have gone to bed without sneaking in and turning them off.
So I tip toed in and turned off the TV, then the light. I thought something smelled funny, but was half asleep so trudged back to bed.
As I lay there, I wondered if she had pooped her diaper again…I’m ashamed to say, my first thought was…hey…Jim will get it in the morning.
A few minutes ticked by and I couldn’t stand it. If she had messed herself I couldn’t just leave it till morning.
So I throw back the covers, go grab a diaper, and turn on the hall light, so as not to startle her with direct light.
My worst fears were true…not only had she messed herself, she’d tried to get the poopy diaper off, so it was everywhere. As I began to pull the sheets back and softly tell her I was going to get her all cleaned up, she pulled at the sheet to try to cover herself and said
“No! Just leave it…”
Compassion overwhelms me as I use some tough love, gentle but stern, to convince her to cooperate, and 45 minutes later, she is all cleaned up, new jammies on, new sheets, and ready to go back to sleep.
I look in her eyes, trace her face, and tell her how much I love her, and say,
“Now see how much better it feels to be all clean?”
All the time I’m looking to make sure I found all the poop, as I’m doing my best to thoroughly wipe her down, I’m reminded of how many times I’ve messed up my life, and God has lovingly cleaned me up. How often I’ve tried to protect myself and shoo Him off, saying with my behavior,
“No! Just leave it…I can handle this!”
I’m sure at those moments I (spiritually) stunk to high heaven, but God didn’t turn up His nose, look the other way and just leave me in my mess.
Oh, how many times He would combine grace and mercy and gently persevere to clean me up anyway, because He loves me and doesn’t want me to stay that way…
But so many times, my own wounding and the bad choices that resulted from those wounds became to me a safe place to hide, stinky and messy, and after a while, it became my new normal.
Praise God that He is not afraid of our sinful messes…and not afraid to turn the light on to penetrate our darkness, so that He can clean us up and make us new.
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.