Saturday, March 8, 2014

It Snowed on My Renovation

It snowed on my renovation.


I live in South Carolina. This kind of winter weather occurs maybe once a decade. But just let my house get torn apart, let me be waiting for paint and granite, let me get to a point where people are watching me for signs of imminent implosion, and then, baby, we will have snow. We will have a storm worthy of a name. Winter Storm Pax. Pax? Doesn’t that mean Peace? Who makes up these names anyway?

In a part of the country where we had ZERO snow days last year, our kids have already had eight. EIGHT! All eight of them, you guessed it, in the middle of my renovation. And that doesn’t include the early dismissals and late starts.

I confess that there have been more than a few times when I’ve lifted my eyes to the heavens with one profound question.


(You need to try to get the full effect. Look at your ceiling. Infuse your voice with annoyance. Roll your eyes. Twice. Then say it with me.)


(Now huff and shake your head. You’ve got it.)

It’s a wonder there were no lightening strikes to go along with the snow because if I’ve learned anything during the past eight weeks, it’s this.

I am addicted to comfort and I am spoiled to convenience.

For weeks, we operated with a make-shift kitchen. The refrigerator was in the garage. The kitchen sink was in a box upstairs awaiting the granite so we used the sink in the laundry room. The dishes were in boxes in the basement, so we used a lot of paper. There was a stretch where the oven was also in the garage, so we used the stovetop, microwave, and we ate out. A lot.

Does anyone else see the problem here?

I’m complaining, because my refrigerator (one of two, I might add) was in the garage. I had power, running water, heat, food . . . And a bad attitude.

But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. (I Timothy 6:8, ESV)
Do all things without grumbling or questioning. (Philippians 2:14, ESV)
If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. (I John 1:8, ESV)

What I want to call a justifiable annoyance, understandable aggravation, or reasonable frustration, God refuses to condone. So let’s lay it out there with a little less finesse and a whole lot more truth.

It’s called sin.


This renovation exposed more than studs and sub-floor.
It exposed the moldy mess of my heart.

Laid bare, for weeks. Layers of gunk and grime that I’ve never had to deal with before. And every time I tried to short-circuit the process or make it less frustrating, God cut me off. There was no getting around this lesson. No quick fix. No express lane back to comfort and convenience.

I’m sure God had many purposes for Winter Storm Pax, but there’s no question in my mind that part of the plan was the overhaul needed in my heart.

I’m writing these words on one of the final days of the renovation. There are a few rooms that make me smile every time I enter them. There are lamps, rugs, pictures, comfy chairs, and the kitchen island of my dreams. There’s fresh paint and new curtains and a general sense of things being as they should be.

Then there are the other rooms.
Sweet mercy.
Hot mess doesn’t even come close to describing the chaos in my bathroom. Or the laundry situation.

A hot mess, just like me.

I’m pretty sure as God looks around my heart, He sees the rooms that aren’t too bad. The places where He is reflected well. But He sees all the other spaces, too. The filth hidden behind doors, under floors, or covered up with glossy paint. The difference is, that while this girl doesn’t want to see another renovation for a decade, He’s already spotted a space that can’t wait. He can picture it, how it will look when He’s done. How His glory will shine. How He will be put on display in that spot.

The question is, when He gets to work will I fight Him every step of the way, or will I trust that He knows what He’s doing? Will I call sin, sin, and allow His forgiveness and cleansing to wash me clean, or will I wallow in my own muck?

There’s one thing I know for sure.

He’s not done.
Not even close.


Sandra Allen Lovelace said...

I have no idea what you're talking about. I can't imagine being frustrated into a sinful attitude or behavior.

Oops, there was the one time when . . .

And then there was the day I . . .

On second thought this is a right on post.

Come on in, Lord. There's plenty of renovation work needed here.

Cyn Rogalski said...

Thank you for baring your truth in this post. I needed to hear/read it.
Praying God's protection & cover on your newly renovated areas.

Ellen Andersen said...

You always get right to the heart of things, Lynn. Glad to hear the reno is almost done. I'm sure you'll be glad to have your space back to the way you want it.

Thankfully, the weather's clearing up around here too, at least for a while. :)

Marcia Chadwick Moston said...

I so understand the connection between renovation of house and heart. Soon you'll see the pretty! Hopefully inside as well as out. Remember-Jesus was a carpenter!

Unknown said...

Crappy attitude? Impatience? You mean it's not someone or something else's fault? I'm pretty sure if everything is always going my way, I won't have those issues. Wait, that's pride. Ugh.

Lynn, I so appreciate how raw and honest you are. It's not easy to call sin, sin. Thank you for making me stop, read, and pray for forgiveness. We are all under renovation. :)