Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Maintenance Crew

As I was feeding J this afternoon, I started thinking about how much time I will have spent sitting at his high chair, mimicking a baby bird's open beak, stuffing pureed something down his throat.  And then for a split-second I wished it wasn't so.  Some days things like showering, eating and making the bed just seem redundant.  You're going to do it again tomorrow so why worry about it today? :) The more I thought about it though, I have a bad habit of wishing everything was a 'do it once and be done with it' kind of thing.  Don't you?

But let's consider this a bit more.  What aspect of our lives as beings on the earth do NOT require maintenance?  Sure, some require more than others, but everything requires a little bit.  The cactus needs water at some point.  Our spiritual disciplines don't do us any good when they are applied once and then abandoned.  Relationships will not survive without some attention and many require it daily.  And though I sincerely despise housework and the fact that toilets get dirty over and over again, I'm learning to be thankful for the maintenance crew.

When I put on my maintenance cap willingly (in my marriage, in housework, my prayer life, etc.), I always feel better afterwards.  I learn things, I strengthen things and the world is just better.  I used to spend 90% of my energy getting away from things that required lots of maintenance because I wanted to be free to 'do whatever I wanted to.' I'm slowly learning that everything I wanted to do wasn't worth all the traffic jams I caused in all the other parts of my life.

So, today, what can the maintenance crew teach me?  Nourishment and growth takes time.  Lots of time.  Good things rarely spring up over night without a lot of work behind the scenes.  Let's all be thankful for the people in our life that put so much effort into maintenance work, both physically and spiritually.

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