My friend recently purchased a new vehicle. As often is the case, she wanted to keep it “new” as long as possible. As also is often the case these days, not all restaurants are open for inside dining. While on an all day outing, we needed to get some lunch. Do we eat in the vehicle or not? Eating outside wasn’t an option; eating inside the restaurant wasn’t an option; skipping lunch wasn’t an option. We ate in the vehicle.

When I was putting my purchases in the back seat, I noticed little person mud on the door frame and floor beneath the car seat of her granddaughter. I also have grandchildren evidence in my backseat. Try as I might to keep it clean, I would rather have the smudgy prints on windows and cracker crumbs in the seat than the alternative. The mess is worth the time spent with children.

In the “One Year Bible” reading today, I heard these words read:

4Without oxen a stable stays clean, but you need a strong ox for a large harvest.

Proverbs 14:4

It’s true. There are things in my life that add extra work, perhaps even chaos at times. But without them, my life suffers. Even as I look around my living room today, I see evidence of yesterday’s events. Saturday began with a family breakfast, the remains of which were only wiped away on Sunday morning. I still see books, toys, princess dresses, dolls and home decor in places it doesn’t belong. Most conspicious of all is the Little Tikes swimming pool and water contraption in the middle of the room.

It will all soon be back in order, but I wouldn’t trade the hours of play on Saturday for the cleanliness of an unused space.

Many arenas of life require fastidious work to maintain. Perhaps, the messiness of interpersonal relationships at work is getting on your nerves, but without a job life is tough.

In what way do you find yourself wishing for a clean barn with no oxen, forgetting what you give up to keep the barn clean? What are you willing to sacrifice to enjoy an abundant life harvest right now?

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