Last night I had a Favorite Things Party. For those of you who don’t Pinterest or didn’t watch Oprah in years past, a Favorite Things party is when a group of friends get together and share their favorite things with each other, often walking away with some pretty awesome stuff.
If you prep for a party like me, you have things that get left to the last minute. My 2 things every time are dishes and a shower. I know. One would think that if that’s what gets left to the last minute I could plan better and make them not issues. I could take a shower first or stay up 15 minutes later the night before and get the dishes done. Yes. I could do that. I even convince myself that I will do that. But I don’t.
I showered about ½ hour before party time and had about 10 minutes to hammer out a sink/counter FULL of dishes. You’re saying to yourself “Surely it couldn’t be that bad.” You’re adorable. It was that bad. My girls (Mini Me and Jason Jr.) were standing there, watching as I came to the conclusion that the impossible was really that, impossible.
I had some choices to make. I could leave the entire sink/counter full of dirty dishes. But they stunk. And the sink stunk. And parties that literally stink are no fun! I could invite guests in, make an excuse for why my dishes weren’t done (I have many excuse cards I could pull), have them party while I finish the dishes (cutting about 20 minutes into me enjoying the party) or I could do what I could and leave the rest.
With girls watching, wondering…kind of hoping I’d pull out a magic wand (that broke a LONG time ago) I did what I could. I put the big bowls and buckets (that were dirty from popcorn) in the oven. Yes. In the oven. I loaded the dishwasher as full as I could with the space and time I had. The rest of the dishes I put on one side of my sink to soak. Smell was gone, dishes weren’t all done, and I partied with my friends. All of whom could have cared less about my dishes.
Two days prior, one of my church classes had a lively discussion about Mary and Martha from the Bible (King James version). Some of the women identified with Mary and some identified with Martha. From how I heard it all, it was a matter of priorities. For some, the first priority was to eat. For others, the first priority was to be spiritually fed. Which comes first?? Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs tells us eating comes first. The bible story tells us partaking of “the good part” takes priority (see Luke 10:38-42) .
Here's the thing. I would guess that Mary, Martha and Jesus were not physically starving. They were not the Elijah being fed by the widow of Zarephath story (see 1 Kings 17:8-16) . Because when that woman and her child were next to starvation, she was encouraged by God to eat then was spiritually fed. Christ was in their house. Jesus. In their house. How many people could say that they had the chance to have Jesus in their house? Knowing Christ, he didn’t care much about the meal. He wouldn’t have cared if the sink was full of dishes. Obviously, what was more important in that moment was connection. If it was about the meal, he would have told Mary that she needed to be more concerned with feeding him verses sitting at His feet.
Is a clean house important for the Spirit to dwell? Yes. If the mess is an A&E episode or Hoarders, you should get a handle on it. House of order scripture. Is it important to make dinner, have chores, take care of the yard? Yes. Is it most important?? Nope. Our kids are going to remember how we made them feel. They’re going to remember the lessons we taught by example, they’re going to remember the words the words that came out of our mouths and the tone that carried those words. They are going to remember that it’s ok to put the dishes in the oven or leave a sink to soak to go to a party that they really need (believe me, I needed the connecting with my friends last night) or that it’s ok to have a messy living room while they read to a kid or take a much-needed nap. They will hopefully not worry so much about how things look but focus more on how things feel.
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